Kensington and Knightsbridge

We walked wide boulevards beside Hyde Park
filled with black-cabs, occasional Ferraris.
The locals accustomed to crossing
just before the green man lit up,
watching for amber’s switch to red.
The wide, elaborate railings
beside the gold coated statue
with its marble gazebo, ever sheltering
the consort of a long-reigning queen.
He must have liked a bit of a tune;
a coral dome erected in his name
with cavorting sandstone minstrels
galloping in frescoes around its walls.
The Daughter amazed that Imperial
was so close to three museums,
Livingstone stuck in a crevice
by the Geological Society,
she wondered what halls of residence
might be like amongst grand facades.
We saw lions, with wings spread, on corners,
sea serpents, perhaps dragons, four tails
entwined and embedded in brickwork.
Dark liveried doormen jigging foot to foot
on a cold morning outside an Italian hotel
with arched windows in descending size
as they climbed to higher floors.
We surmised an Italian-Russian connection
based on the look of the doormen:
one slight, olive skinned and dark-haired,
the other hard faced, Slavic as a salt mine.

Sue Spiers