A Voyage Through London

From Tufnell Park to Church Street Ken.


Tufnell Park

Long ago, in the nineteen-sixties,
I lived in the north of London
in a place called Tufnell Park.
The area was tranquil and fine;
it was safe to walk after dark.
I travelled to work every day
making use of the Northern Line.

Had to change for Piccadilly station
and the journey caused me stress.
After careful consideration
I decided to change my address.
What better than Kensington,
I thought, and found some digs
in a road just off Church Street.

The new abode was such a treat.
Not far from Notting Hill Gate
I could reach Portobello Road
and, if the weather wasn’t rainy,
explore its Saturday market,
where I sought genuine antiques.
But, alas, I could never find any.

With my friends, at weekends,
I’d head for the Hammersmith Palais,
with its incredible vast ballroom,
to dance to Joe Loss’s orchestra
and to listen to Rose Brennan sing
while dreaming of finding romance
or at the very least an amorous fling.

Since I arrived, I took this city to heart;
I was beguiled; didn’t need to be told
–  like Dick Whittington once was –
that London was paved with gold;
I knew that this prodigious metropolis
was endowed with riches far greater:
its history, its culture and its Art.

© Luigi Pagano 2016  

 

© ionicus 2020
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Valdohren

My daughter lives in London Luigi, so paid many visits with my late husband. Always enjoyed being in the Big Smoke, but was always glad to be back home here in my little village. Well written.
Val x

Miel

I enjoyed reading your poem.. I have been to London several times for work and on holiday… a fascinating city with so much history and culture… Your poem brings back many good memories

Leila

Nice one Luigi, I lived in London for 5 years and this took me on a lovely nostalgic trip…Leila x

 <span title="New Commenter" style="font-size : small; color: blue;">*</span><p>

London will always be for me, no matter what happens, even if a nuclear bomb lands on it, the most beautiful city on earth. That’s because it’s my home, and the scene of most of my memories and emotional experiences. The London you describe here though, is a completely alien place to the one I know. Can there ever have been a time when Tufnell Park was on the “outskirts” of London? There is rather a lot of London to the north of there, and has been for as long as I can remember. Perhaps you don’t consider the suburbs… Read more »

 <span title="New Commenter" style="font-size : small; color: blue;">*</span><p>

Me, no…. I was born in 1980 (which now, perhaps incredibly, was 36 years ago), and I remember Kensington as always being unaffordable for the vast majority of people apart from a few council estates dotted around the place. I grew up in Walthamstow, which is about 15 minutes from Kings Cross on the Victoria Line. It’s in Zone 3, which makes it further out than Tufnell Park. To me, Tufnell Park seemed to be deeper into the city, just north of the too-cool-for-school Camden. To me, London ended where the forests and fields began. Half an hour is not… Read more »

 <span title="New Commenter" style="font-size : small; color: blue;">*</span><p>

What the fuck has got into you??? Jesus… I’m pretty sure you once told me that you were a country boy, that you grew up in a small community. And even if I am mistaken, what is so wrong about that? There’s nothing bad about coming from the countryside. Why would there be? Regarding my “wanting to pick a fight with everyone”, by “everyone” you just mean “Coolhermit”. And actually, he was the one who picked a fight with me. He deleted all his work off UKA because of me and Alison, and has been complaining about us for months… Read more »

TheRecluse

Really enjoyed this autobiographical romp through this fine district of London, Luigi. I worked for RB of K & C in the 60’s assistant to the Borough doctor resolving medical pointings as they were called. I remember fighting the notorious Rackman in Kensington, the rogue landlord, which brought a new word in the OD Rackmanism, exploitation of slum tenants, which was resolved by new housing acts. And changing Rillington Place to Ruston Place because no-one would live there after the Christie murders, causing the hanging of his innocent tenant, Evans (until the truth came out!). Moved from Chelsea Town Hall… Read more »

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