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Ophelia in London

by Janey Antoniou.

This poem is the winner of the First Prize in the Martha Robinson poetry competition 2006


You drift in white along the Embankment with restless hands and voice.
Whispering.
Footfall scrapes and echoes in the night silence, a shadow leaps to touch yours before passing. Another tortured soul
mutters and slinks in the yellow lampflare.
Your thoughts bend and race and slide in chaos, never meeting in coherence and fullstops. Will it be the river My Lady? The oily, silent Thames or the thundering rusty train wheels? The hospitals are full.
Wander, randomly turning, locked in the nightmare of your world, cruel voices, laughing teasing, mocking in your mind.
Ophelia, Ophelia walking in the back streets with weary, wide unfocused eyes. Singing and sad.
The drugs don't work, there are no beds. So in the end there only is the grass-green turf and stone.