The green light is given, pumping billions
into the high-speed race for ballast and steel,
ploughing through sunlit wood and glade.
Destruction quantified; the track hacking a path
into irreplaceable reserves, forests
centuries old, systematically felled, remnants trailing
in the wake. The executioner, slices through the web
slaughters dormouse, barn owl, lizard, tit-willow
white-clawed crayfish, dingy skipper butterfly
carving up the countryside – many consent,
a few try to halt this reckless contempt,
ache to cradle nature whole – to restore
the myriad connections which trees embrace,
interweaving worlds, both living and dead.
© Steve Walter