IN THE HOUSE OF THE LAST LONDON
I entered the house of the last London. So is this it?
Is it the end, or is it already beginning again?
The rooms are silent, occupied by myriad gazes and gestures, bodies visible and invisible. And in the backyard the garden is still in bloom.
Are the clouds gathering or dispersing? Or are they just passing by, as usual?
In the dusk the murky light will not reveal whether it is night or a new day dawning.
The staircases are empty, but I can hear the sound of a gathering crowd drifting in from the open windows like a warm summer’s breeze- and the damp smell of rain.
The marks are on the walls, arranged in various formations, some of them deliberate, and some of them the offspring of chance collisions, like cosmic debris drifting through space.
The floorboards speak under my weight but everything else is still, awaiting a next move.
A heavy hand hovers over the house of the last London- one deft swipe will bring all of its walls tumbling down and yield space for the next impenetrable, unmarked fort, rising over fresh, unmarked graves.
But for now the tender walls hold the names and the dates that were laid down along with its bricks, one at a time, one above the other, bound with mortar and spit and blood, until they too became a house.
Perhaps the last.
Perhaps the first.