“In London, that great sea, whose ebb and flow
At once is deaf and loud, and on the shore
Vomits its wrecks, and still howls on for more.
Yet in its depth what treasures!” – Shelley
It’s the heartland without much heart. Drill, crane, digger, gutting outside in and transplanting steel and glass organs of business. And at this throbbing head of civilisation, we push and tut, and rush to travel from homes beyond the pale. Communities without gates arise in the city centres where the only pass is enough currency to have to waste to spend. I live at the boundary where opportunistic side-liners glean. Street vendors, ticket touts, card sharps, thieves with big pockets and a knack of distraction pass me by. People looking for their fix, beggars who ought to know better and those who have slipped the net. They snuggle with folded bed and canine companion while the thousand and one feet fill their gaze. I sometimes stop to pet the dog, buy a poem, offer coffee or a punnet of foreign strawberries. The city is the kindness of strangers.
sardined in a tube*
contact by transient smile
beams of wintry sun
*in London the Tube or the Underground = a Metro
Written for Björn’s DVerse haibun Monday prompt: Contemporary cityscape