Passing ransacked umbrella stands,
grasping newspaper with their hands.
Holding shelter above their heads;
sloshing through tar riverbeds.
Hailing taxis from the pale;
the diesel saviours from the hail.
Wading through the flowing street,
committed to their client meet.
London converted to a wet-room,
The Shard covered by humid gloom.
Meetings start with sweaty handshakes;
small talk steams as some run late.
Returning home to tiny flats,
they open up the door out back,
to sit on decks and regroup,
but the garden slugs have staged a coup.
London mourns suede shoes:
ten thousand pairs lost in June.
Today the weather won again,
we must prepare for war, good men.
But sleep well, beloved city,
for tomorrow will take pity;
the weather programme on TV
said, “Mostly sunny, highs of twenty-three.”