Burlington Arcade

I’m being carried down
the Burlington Arcade
by Beadles in top hats,
jewelers on both sides
holding out their hands
and wrapped in cashmere.
When people speak of
near-death experiences
they’re always going through
tunnels, they’re happy,
they’re never going through
the Burlington Arcade.

Eric says, It’s good
to see you wearing clothes
and I have to admit he’s
wearing the most beautiful
trousers and I say, Eric
you’re not supposed to be
in this poem. Get back
into your shop! I can see
a light at the end of the tunnel.
The Head Beadle’s saying
“Burlington Gardens!”

Should I tip him?
Am I dead?
What happens next?

More Poems by Julian Stannard