Ar lan y môr mae rhosys cochion.
In the front seat, his hand a bloodless glove
pressed to the passenger window,
grazing a bard’s palaver of birds with the point
of a stubbed little nail—
charcoal mornings, the bleary light
crumbling art-canvas, open-eyed
seatown galleries spitting oil-skins,
mother-of-pearl tides roll themselves out
like wounded dogs, limping the shores
of all we know
as the crowblack, fishboat-bobbing sea
foaming the ale-coloured glass.
White rose spray on the drowning bar;
the salt-nut crunching crowds.
Some days in a Celtic mood
he will sing the shimmering rain,
roll out his tongue in a London sky
but tasting only ash
remember a hymn in a Swansea voice—
blow every word til the flowering smoke
sheds itself like a rose
in an evening starless and bible-black--
suffer the wheeze of city haze
to find the old sea in its lights.