Wednesday 8 February 2012



Robert Leighton

To live in London was my young wood-dream,—
London, where all the books come from, the lode
That draws into its centre from all points
The bright steel of the world; where Shakspeare wrote,
And Eastcheap is, with all its memories
Of gossip Quickly, Falstaff, and Prince Hal;
Where are the very stones that Milton trod,
And Johnson, Garrick, Goldsmith, and the rest;
Where even now our Dickens builds a shrine
That pilgrims through all time will come to see,—
London! whose street names breathe such home to all:
Cheapside, the Strand, Fleet Street, and Ludgate Hill,
Each name a very story in itself.
To live in London!—London, the buskined stage
Of history, the archive of the past,—
The heart, the centre of the living world!
Wake, dreamer, to your village and your work.


Photo of Fleet Street in the late 1800's and current day courtesy

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