A poem from the 1969 Corgi anthology Doves For The 70s
Rats run, unheeding, through the court
or stop to drink
from scum-topped, stinking pools
that make the place a bog.
A dog rakes, mindless, in the waste
from dustbin dropped
and scatters a he goes
a swarm of buzzing flies.
And overall, a smell, a stench
of dump, disease, decay.
The crumbling walls,
the shattered panes,
the filth, the muck.
And, in the midst of this
a child plays, heedless and content,
that this is right, or kind, or just.