Walking down Renshaw Street from ‘Rumpelstiltskin’
at the Unity then along Bold Street,
with its strolling crowds and varied eateries,
to Central Station, thinking of spinning gold
from straw, we pass beggars in doorways.
‘What are they doing?’ our granddaughter asks.
We explain. ‘Why don’t they get jobs?’ We explain.
My mother would tell me how, when she moved
to London before the war to be a nurse,
she was appalled by the rough sleepers
on the benches along the Thames Embankment.