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View from the bridge

Posted in Style & Travel

It was one of my favorite places to take a visiting friend at night, Westminster Bridge. Maybe walk all the way from Trafalgar Square, down Whitehall, pointing out Downing Street, empty under the cover of dark.

Or maybe exiting the Westminster tube station, and finding oneself right across from Big Ben. Veering left, a short skip to the bridge. Letting the chest hit the parapet and turning the gaze to the right, to take in the spires of the Parliament, the light glowing from the Gothic windows reflected in the murky waters underneath.

At night, always at night, the later the better to imagine other lives, different times.

The Palace of Westminster, once home to kings, burnt down. Twice. In the 1500s and the 1800s. Twice rebuilt. Because symbols, and beauty, matter.

Composed Upon Westminster Bridge, September 3, 1802

William Wordsworth

Earth has not anything to show more fair:

Dull would he be of soul who could pass by

A sight so touching in its majesty;

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;

All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.

Never did sun more beautifully steep

In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill;

Ne’er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep!

The river glideth at his own sweet will:

Dear God! the very houses seem asleep:

And all that mighty heart is lying still!

Poem unearthed by full-timeĀ  LondonerEddie C.

 

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6 Comments

  1. Grazie. Non so se dire che siamo tutti londinesi o, direttamente, siamo tutti terrestri

    March 26, 2017
    |Reply
  2. Beautiful poem. We’re all still in shock over here… I really, really hope people act as Londoners and stick together, instead of giving in to fear.

    March 24, 2017
    |Reply
    • Londoners carry the gene of having survived the blitz. What could scare them?

      March 28, 2017
      |Reply
      • They have the Stiff Upper Lip gene ?

        March 28, 2017
        |Reply
  3. Glad you liked the poem! One of my favourites. I too enjoy this bridge and view and shall go on loving it.

    March 23, 2017
    |Reply

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