Wednesday, 22 April 2015

The #London Reading List No.24: The Shining Streets of London by Alfred Noyes

Throughout March & April 2015 we'll be compiling our definitive London Reading List. 

We've asked London Walks Guides & London Walkers to recommend a favourite book or story, and we've also raided the archives here at The Daily Constitutional to bring a rich and varied selection of London-themed and London-set reading matter.

Whether you live here in London, work here, play here or if you are in the throws of planning a trip to visit us here, these are the books you need to read. As usual, you can give us a shout with your own recommendations – thrillers, literary classics, biographies, anthologies, anything! – at the usual email address, via Twitter or Facebook, or simply leave a comment below.

Corinna adds…

No 24: The Shining Streets of London by Alfred Noyes

Now in the twilight after rain
The wet black streets shine out again
And softly through the coloured gloom
The lamps like glowing tulips bloom.

Lighted shops down aisles of mist
Smoulder in gold and amethyst
And paved with fragments of the skies
Our sooty town like Venice lies.

Buses like gondolas lifting high
Their sooty prows against the sky
And lighted faces row on row
From darkness into darkness go.

This was a favourite poem of a dear friend of mine who died recently.

I think of it when I see the buses crossing London Bridge before my Haunted London walk on a Friday evening.


Corinna is a treasurably barking – and ferociously intelligent – Cambridge bluestocking. She's the only well known Royal National Theatre actress who's also a psychrolute!* Most recently she starred in the hit West End play, Copenhagen. She's been known to throw in a song or two on her walks but she leaves her cello at home. Anything else? Yes, she's also a professionally qualified London Guide. *Every single morning of the year. With the ducks. In a Hampstead pond.

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