28 OCTOBER 1966, Page 22

Aberfan : Under

the Arc Lights

Ask what was normal in green nature and its pain: Will rain undermine our homes and us again?

Ask those scrabbling garden-breakers, the mountain sheep Where are the classroom's children?—and then weep.

0 martyred town shorn 6f its crown of glory!

That dumpy matriarch scanning in our fury For faces of first-borns in the two handed- bier;

All the elements of tragedy, are here.

Waters of history still in midnight's deep Drip in Ceridwen's cauldrons; rage eistedd- fod, seep Into the jagged stalactites of hearts' hours. Crushed out of life like paper-petalled flowers.

Ask courting couples whose coats took dust off the tips; And hand back to the heavens stars on the future lips; Children conceived in mist whose play- ground it had made.

Blame breeds guilt with blind anger in its road.

The whole bare drama played . out as it looms To a world-shared audience in their evening room; One human chain of rescue under arc-light glare.

All the elements of tragedy are here.


• '6,