Tuesday 5 March 2013

360 º

I won't take a camera I thought,
it'll just be in the way and
I don't want to carry a heavy bag.

So what did I decide to do on the spur of the moment
on this sunniest and clearest of Spring days?
I went up the Shard.
Probably the best blogortunity in London.
Well I looked with my eyes and not a lens
and it was just as you'd hope
a view from the 72nd level would be,
800 giddy feet in the air.

Little white trains slithered in and out of stations;
slipped past each other across bridges, 
curled away and converged with immaculate timing.
Boats large and small chugged up and down the river.
A police launch nosed importantly between the slower vessels.

Big Ben was tiny.
So was St. Paul's. 

The Thames takes a deeply sinuous route into the far distance
glinting upstream in the low sun,
broadening downstream towards Greenwich and the open sea.

But most beautiful of all was to see all around 
the rim of hills that hold London 
in their hazy and distant embrace.

The only jarring note was the quite unnecessary New Age muzak,
intended I suppose to heighten your wonderment.
At that height, with a slight breeze on my face,
blissfully removed from 
the blare of mobile phones and traffic,
it was silence I craved.
That would have made the Shard sublime.


  1. Well your wonderful description took me there. I could picture the view from the Shard just as if I'd been there. What a great day out.

  2. Far more detail than any picture could have captured, well done and thank you.

    I shall stay at the bottom with Sue...

  3. Sometimes the eye, and not the lens, leaves us with more to remember.

    Now I want to go up the Shard myself.....

  4. Murphy and his laws... ♥♥♥

  5. Your writing is quite picturesque.

  6. I love your description, and that's all I want until I can see it myself. I hope my view is as poetic as your words :)

  7. What a wonderful description, Lucille. You have absolutely captured it and how lovely to have gone up on a clear day. You could barely see Big Ben on the day I went! And I so agree about the muzak, I longed for an off-switch.

  8. Thank you for the link - I had a look at the view myself. I was looking at photos from my daughter's recent school trip to NY city. I admit I felt better looking at photos of Central Park and the view from the Empire State building than of city streets. Long ranging vistas seem pretty important to me.
    Very much enjoyed your poetic musings about being way up there. I would have resented the Muzak, too.