Oh Denmark Street

Oh Denmark Street home of
Tin Pan Alley and Ernie Ball.
Sliding up behind Centre Point.
Invisible to those who trace the path
from Leicester Square to Oxford Street.

By day a thoroughfare;
with dark guitar doors
and twelve bar smokers at night.
In spitting distance of Fagan’s Rookeries
and the glory holes of old Soho.

Set adrift it seems; in this playground.
Do you know about the lepers scrawl,
or the plans afoot at Camden Town Hall.
Have you seen the Roma along Park Lane,
or the pig atop his golden throne.

Once at Cambridge Circus
I watched them bury the dead.
Wrapped in plastic, with a lolling head.
The corpse of some unfortunate,
who never found his Holy Grail.

Is this your future; bagged-up and buried.
Taken away before the streets are washed.
Oh Denmark Street you piece of grit,
in the eye of homogeneity.
Lets not celebrate your passing, just yet.


I was out last night watching Johny Brown and his Band of Holy Joy, at the 12 Bar Club in Denmark Street. The time, the place, the band, reminded me of old London. Before it became a playground for the rich. When music was a celebration, not some glorified ringtone. This is not about nostalgia, its about the here and now. Treasure the places around you, because one day they will be gone.


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