Black Country Poetry: two poems by Patrick O’Shea

Black Country Ways


Big Lissy, furnace in folklore.
Born in the Black Country, 1954.
Just outside Wolvo, in Bilston, you know.
That factory sky, a burst of red glow.
Black Country grafter, sweat on his brow.
Pouring the metal, trudging to and fro.
Black skies by day, red at night.
Across this region, production was might.

Mines, foundries, and steel mills abound.
Blacksmiths and chainmakers working so proud.
Black Country grafters toiling away
Across this region, back in the day.

Bank’s n Bathams, thirst quenching trays.
Black Country humour, faggots n pays.
Salt of the earth, folk were in those days.
Grafters with humour, Black Country ways.


Titanic Anchor


Black Country metal
From hot furnace blast
Formed this giant anchor
With link chains to cast.

Gigantic Titanic
Destined to fail
Waiting in Belfast
For anchor to sail.

Steam powered forges
Pounding anchor’s shank
Black Country ommers!
At Netherton bank.

A 16 ton anchor
Of solid metal mass
The world’s largest anchor
Ever wrought from blast.

Noah Hingley & Sons
Shipped out that day
20 Clyesdale Shire horses
Pulling anchor-clad dray.

Hundreds lined the roadsides
To wish it good will
Upon its final journey
Up through Cinders Hill.

Black Country grafters
What an engineering feat
ILL FATED!  Titanic anchor
Dark night, deep long sleep.



Patrick Kevin O’Shea was recently diagnosed with cancer. After major surgery and a course of chemotherapy, he is now cancer free but blind in one eye. He treats every day as if it were his first and says he has a third eye as a substitute, which he also calls his soul.

His experience inspired him to write poetry. Patrick was contacted by Bridgnorth town council to read out two of his poems at the opening of the Xmas tree light festival. His poetry has been printed in anthologies and magazines such as Poetry for Peace, the Black Country Bugle, and a poetry anthology for St Giles Hospice.


Banner image: The Titanic anchor in 1911. Courtesy of Dudley Local History and Archives Service.

4 thoughts on “Black Country Poetry: two poems by Patrick O’Shea

  1. Well done Patrick.
    Good to see you are still going strong and work still in print.

    Cora (Codsall Writers)

    Liked by 1 person

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