Poetry: Gratitude | Cassandra Voices

Poetry: Gratitude



“Hate it here? But why?”
I’m sick of your confounded cry.

London is Open—
But when is a kind word spoken
At 8 AM when elbows stab your side,
A slouching drunk swallows your Pride,
And grinning altruists shiver and wait
For you to blink and take their bait?
And so we move in clogging thuds,
Weave through drying gum and blood.

London, what are you doing?
Are you even awake?
“City that never sleeps”? I’m suing.
You plagiarize for tourism’s sake.

London, you pander to the saints,
Resign yourself as relatively quaint.
You barely know where you end,
You hardly care when around the bend
The streets are piled with shoveled debris;
You gentrify, refine, on your austerity spree.

I want to love your complacency,
That languid beauty in every face you see;
You have extolled diversity.
You lack sincerity.
If Broadway bleeds, the West End is dry—
Not “if”, that’s exactly what I mean by

Passionless, reserved, ancient, tranquil;
I repine, I whine, but still I’m thankful.
As I dissociate on your timely Underground,
Elton’s voice sings, “for the people I have found.

Image: Daniele Idini


About Author

Michaela Brady's writing has been featured in Psychology Today, The Sarah Lawrence Review, The Oxford Review of Books, The Bright App blog, Streatham Lockdown Diaries and Airplane Reading. In recent years, she has been shortlisted for the Benjamin Franklin House Literary prize, and won first place in the Nature 2020-21 anthology competition for the blog, “Tales for the Ones in Love.” Originally, from NYC, she studied creative writing, media history and psychology at Sarah Lawrence College, and hold an MSc in Social Science of the Internet (Oxon). She is currently a civil servant at DCMS, and an active member of the Oxford Writing Circle.

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