An interesting adventure through London, not visiting all the normal monuments, but walking along the river brought Margie Goldsmith in her article, “London Calling: The City of Immoral Rhymes,” to standing in history, meeting interesting locals, and learning lots of historical poems. Her stroll through London presents a new historical view of the great city.
As I stood back up from the railing, I realized I had been leaning on a small plaque that read: “William Wordsworth 1770-1850, Composed Upon Westminster Bridge, Sept. 1802.”
This city now doth, like a garment wear
The beauty of the morning silent, bare,
Ships, towers, domes, theatres and temples lie
Open unto the fields, and to the sky;
Further on, a man and woman covered head to foot in silver and wearing Elizabethan dress stood motionless, pretending to be statues.The walkway continued through a little tunnel where a gaunt-looking man wearing a red artist’s cap, old red shirt and wrinkled rain jacket stood by a display of brightly colored envelopes spread out on a blanket.
“Feel free to look,” he said,
“Do you have a poem for a tourist?” I asked, half joking.
“I do!” he said, his face brightening. “I just wrote one for a special friend of mine.”
He stood up taller, took a deep breath and began to orate in a deep theatrical voice:
This is London calling –
To a beautiful Lady
of the New World
Our old sends greeting.
My poem tucked in my pocket, I continued along the bank of the Thames and suddenly there was the Globe Theatre: round, with white plaster walls and dark wooden beams, just the way I’d seen it in books, thatched roof and all.