Saturday, 16 May 2009

The City

Starbucks; hiss and steaming muzzles

where the thinnest person crunches

a door-shut again and again

because it’s winter, draughty, freezing.


In concrete, Canary Wharfe shudders

and a fat  lady hangs an ermine coat,

spills her coffee – cappuccino.

No one mentions the gigantic puddle


until a tiny Chinese barmaid,

smiling, mops it mostly up with paper towels.

Unconscious, we avoid the messy circle,



if you call that, in your opinion,

a proper word.



  1. occassional word play is acceptable, one must know the proper time to use it. Your use of it at the end of thee poem, reminds me of a literary snob *smiley*

  2. Love london, was there in October. The city takes my breath away.

    Ps: great poem; you are an observer, a poet, do you know it??

  3. Cool! I feature an excerpt from American 20th century poet Hart Crane's poem "To Brooklyn Bridge" on my blog tomorrow, Dec 15th.

  4. love the use of run on lines
    rather like e.e cummings too

  5. I was going to mention the strange use of the word "muzzles" and upon reading again the Merriam definition thought twice and said okay, but then in following up with the imagery mentioned I thought twice and second guess myself (GADS noooo) so I said to myself it was okay so I relaxed as I thought it so strange people have traumatized imagery from the strangest things. So some how I liked something about it. Someone call my shrink!

  6. un-angry. Not a usual word, but fits like a glove in this poem. It is such simplicity that is difficult to come by. Wonderful read indeed.

  7. Words are always important there use may change the meaning of the sentence.

  8. Nicely observed slice of city life. I loved your word choice that brought this all into focus. Very well done.

  9. Why un-angry? I would've thought she'd be cross. But I like the structure of the poem and the images.

  10. I love your use of an unword.
    It's perfect to be unangry if you are unconscious.
    Wry smile,
    Karen Hoyt

  11. Yeah,what happened to good ol' clothes that you disinfected or for that matter old newspaper!

  12. How very wonderful. It arrived through Twitter as I was performing some necessary tasks, which were not necessarily inspiring, and suddenly there was a light. Thank you.

  13. Thank you for your words, John. They capture the bleakness of some parts of some cities. There's a separation between the people that's reminiscent of city-ness.