The Proposed Demolition Of City Church Number Nineteen


The following items to be covered: suffering,
   Customer care, a good lunch.
On this site a hospital was founded for the insane,
   ‘I say Bert, didn’t you buy the first round?’
On the corner of Thread, two fellows set about
   A messenger telling him –
‘Give up your dead, give up your dead’
   He is of the sod it school of response and takes cover
In a culvert rather than Saint Clements.
   An electronic signal makes a much better communicant
And sometime after, participants numbering three
   Are made obsolete to satisfy
Customer care, to satisfy customer care.


A deacon preaches an unrestricted sermon on the
   Steps of his church to the dollar and the mortgage-
The following morning, a thoughtful bishop makes a
   Councilmen move in; plans are prepared for the laity
Who shall inherit not this earth but a public convenience.
   Later some of the listeners clash with their secretaries
Outside Cannon Street.
‘We must get Jack, he’d look good in the Bank’
   Jack, looking depressed, manages a triple somersault
Olympic perfection off The Monument
   Declaring markets to be ‘spiritual not suffering’.


Financial lunching has outdone even
the English martyrs:
   Knowing the people who preach under vaulted ceilings
About economics and recite poets long dead with names
   Like the Honourable Julian Grenfell.
Suddenly, twenty fanatical commuters rush forward to the
   Protesting about the state of English football-
Wine and bread are offered to press the case for greater
  Democracy amidst the dimly lit sanctuaries.
As the meal ends, the chairman motions to thank his guests:
   By majority voting, church number nineteen shall be
And on its site rise a new benefice as the millennium.

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