Sydenham High Street

Will Hatchett

Nothing ever happened round here.
We passed our dull lives invisibly.
We lived on luncheon meat and gassy beer
in drab suburban conformity.
Their advanced forces approached stealthily.
Quietly, they moved from street to street
as their prim curtains twitched digitally:
a new web page, a Facebook post, a tweet.
They brought a gluten-free economy
in which coffee was drunk openly
a cheese shop, a microbrewery:
the food fads of the almost wealthy.
Soon, they opened a cozy bistro
where folk singers strummed on guitars
and people ate goats’cheese and prosciutto.
Buggies came and muffins on our bars!
When Zumba arrives, estate agents follow.
Our cheap lager was a fading memory.
The boozer’s gone; it’s Foxtons now.
There is nowhere to be sullen and lonely.
The wine tasting classes were the last straw.
We established a bridgehead at Poundland.
We wanted our lives back, as before.
But it was too late. There was nothing to defend.

Sydenham Road is often known as Sydenham High Street.

Check out more poems about London.

You can read more of Will Hatchett's poems in his collection "63, a London bus journey" on Scribd: click here

Main Location:

Sydenham Rd, London SE26, UK

View of Sydenham Road, London