Blasted by lightning are they,
those stumps of blackened wood,
that ghastly skeleton tree?
Or by something in the air
that has blanched the ground,
withering the grass and scrub
so that it lies bleached and bare.
If you could stand here in the dark alone
for how long would you stay?
There’s madness in the tall stacks
which loom in the white heat
belching their noxious smoke,
almost obscuring the blue swell of hills
and the towering vault of sky.
This is night, in Irongate.
Bedlam Furnace is the name.
Press on, press homeward, without
looking back; it will stay the same.
Yonder lies the mouth of Hell:
that dark pool is glinting
and flexing like an evil eye.