Capital

At each returning
senses highly attuned
Big Ben solemnly
announces hours to
boatmen and barbers
Covent Garden Apple
cabs and cafés
cosmopolitan cacophony
falafel or fish and chips to
spaghetti bolognese

halves and quarters are
Westminster Chimes over
houses of card in doorways
betwixt happier hotels
elegant architectural heights
museum and mausoleum and
millennium wheel
patisseries and palaces
picnics in Royal parks
seagulls over Leicester Square’s
theatres and cinemas and
Tower Bridge walkways

unquantifiable wealth and
poverty and pavement art
umbrella emporium
Underground rumbling
weary workers
shuffling distractedly
bicycles in bus lanes
smoking and drinking in
streets outside bars
these are our London days

Simon Marsh

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