He heard feathers

He heard feathers
Rustled by the first commuter train,
Felt the stimulus of dark caffeine
Rushing through his veins.

An ancient river stirred
Refreshed by recent rain.
Everything was differed,
Though much remained the same.

He brushed against the push of strangers,
Trying to find a seat,
Envying the luxury of lie-ins,
Of naked flesh in sheets.

And the city rose around him,
Bitter, immediate and sweet,
Bearing a sense of bloody victory:
A butcher packing meat.

He saw the dissolution of morning,
Mist that rolled away
Across the humpback of a crimson bus
Surging through the grey,

As lovely as a dance recital
Coloured with thrown bouquets,
The throng and song of London:
It’s daily passion play.

Eventually, the sun blinked
Vanished below the steel
The rambling city warped and swarmed,
Neon, giddy and real.

The night tilted precariously
Like a turning roulette wheel
And the pavement screamed into the dark
Pinned beneath spiked heels.

Calling London,
Wife and one-night-stand,
A gritty, glittering icon
That defies command.

Easy to love, I fear,
But hard to understand,
The city he felt
When he touched her hand.

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