Friday, 12 August 2011


Poem 43 of 230:  A BAYSWATER BED-SIT

Arrived in London,
    At Heathrow Airport,
With sixty kilos
    Of luggage I'd brought.

Found a paper, Loot,
    And called an agent;
Stored two heavy bags,
    Then to him I went.

For one week of rent,
    He'd ensure a bed
Within Bayswater -
    A bed-sit, he said.

It was eighty pounds
    Per week (nothing more),
With a lift arranged
    To the building's door.

Jet-lagged and sleepless,
    I took the deal;
Checked-in quickly,
    Had a rushed meal.

Collected my bags
    (Tube there, shared-van back),
Then carried them up
    To my top-floor shack.

A penthouse - no need,
    It did me just fine:
A cook-top and fridge,
    A table to dine.

Seated, I could watch
    The clouds roll by -
Often from the west -
    Or jets cut the sky.

There were large plane-trees,
    A squirrel or two;
And pigeons dropped by -
    Foregrounding the view.

Plus, at dawn, the sun
    Shone in from the east -
Filling the small room
    As on toast I’d feast.

And, contemplating,
    It occurs to me -
If all lived that well,
    How great it would be.

But a lot do sleep
    Outdoors many nights -
On sheets of cardboard,
    Without basic rights.

(C) David Franks 2003

What was my local in Bayswater; 2/8/2014

Where I sat in Bayswater; 2/8/14

17 years later, the "large plane-
trees" still looking good within
Kensington Gardens Sq.; 2/8/14