This one’s for everybody who’s ever been in London. Which is to say that it’s primarily for Sean.
Upon Westminster Bridge
by William Wordsworth
EARTH has not anything to show more fair:
Dull would he be of soul who could pass by
A sight so touching in its majesty:
This City now doth like a garment wear
The beauty of the morning; silent, bare,
Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie
Open unto the fields, and to the sky;
All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.
Never did sun more beautifully steep
In his first splendour valley, rock, or hill;
Ne'er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep!
The river glideth at his own sweet will:
Dear God! the very houses seem asleep;
And all that mighty heart is lying still!
Pretty straightforward. Guy loves London, goes out for a walk in the morning before anybody's awake and admires how lovely and strangely calm it looks from one of the bridges over the Thames. When "All that mighty heart" -- London -- is still.
So why bother writing a poem -- why not just send a postcard? Because simply seeing something cannot convey the emotions he felt. In proof of which, I provide you all with a link for a panoramic photo of the view from Westminster Bridge:
Which is better? Depends on what you want.