To Absent Friends

Ah, there you are. Very good. My, isn’t it cold out?

So not only do I adamantly refuse to go away, I also refuse to make sense.

I’ve been in the lovely but freezing city of Edinburgh this week, and so, while this one wasn’t actually intended as such, it could pass as an elegy for a city I have come to call home. London, for all its facelessness, is one of the only places on earth that can draw this type of reverie out of me.

For London, Whenever I May Find Her

Today this city is torn in time.
This vast, beautiful, ungainly
Heffalump of a city
By seeming older is made younger.

The sheets of rain cascade down
The sides of the old towers and the new,
Eroding as they go the twin ravages of age
And modernity.

Gloved and hatted old men watch it happen;
Mittened and galoshed children splash through the puddles,
Which will soon be the only reminders that it ever happened at all.

But while the puddles, the men and even the children will be gone before long,
Always, always, the city remains.


‘Your name froze on the winter air
An empty bench in Soho Square
Forgotten now I turn away
Just save me for a rainy day.’
Kirsty MacColl, ‘Soho Square’

Sorely missed.


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