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 The clock is frozen in the tower,
The thickening fog with sooty smell
Has blanketed the motor power
Which turns the London streets to hell;
And footsteps with their lonely sound
Intensify the silence round.
I haven't hope.
I haven't faith.
I live two lives and sometimes three.
The lives I live make life a death For those who have to live with me.
Knowing the virtues that I lack, I pat myself upon the back.
With breastplate of self-righteousness And shoes of smugness on my feet, Before the urge in me grows less I hurry off to make retreat.
For somewhere, somewhere, burns a light To lead me out into the night.
It glitters icy, thin and plain, And leads me down to Waterloo- Into a warm electric train Which travels sorry Surrey through And crystal-hung, the clumps of pine Stand deadly still beside the line.

by John Betjeman
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