• Ian Dudley

Rialto 89


Rialto 89: Cover Art by Joel Benjamin

I have a poem in Rialto 89. It was inspired by a walk through the Yorkshire Dales with my first boss in IT, whose father farmed nearby. There's a lot of sheep farming in the Dales, and the grazing is exquisitely parcelled out into grey boxes by dry stone walls. The stones used are usually dug from the ground they enclose. There's a fair bit of "pimp my field" about the walls, which are beautiful and perfectly geometric as well as functional.

Sheep farming is barely surviving in this country. Farmers often throw away the fleeces they shear because they can't make any money on the wool. After Brexit, unless EU subsidies are replaced penny for penny by the UK government, it's likely many sheep farmers will go out of business. And then what will happen to the dry stone walls they maintain?