Friday, March 18, 2005

Mr Eliot's Saturday afternoon service

"Judy Egerton had bought the toffee at a bazaar opened by T S Eliot."
Anthony Thwaite, Selected Letters of Philip Larkin

I have seen them coming in
Their hats and coats like dromedary's hair
As they brave the streets of Pimlico

I have seen the stalls weighed down
With so much useless clutter
Left over from a life apart

And now the church hall clock is telling us it's time
It's time for us to reach across
To try to spend and buy and sell
As if we were not coral reefs
Immersed inviolate alone

Outside I hear the tramcar sound its mournful bell
As night enwraps the street and tucks it in
At half past four the dark descends

Aegeus lived to see the black-sailed ship's return
There is no cure to salve the Gorgon's breath
The fete is open, worse than death.

No comments: