A drunken sermon delivered by Rebel John, Homeless Preacher – 4 Am, July 31st 2017

‘London is a bastard!’
In Leicester Square, Rebel John homeless preacher delivers his sermon from a makeshift pulpit outside an ice cream parlour.

Some say the wiry long haired blackcoat has lost his mind others embrace his chaotic diatribe.

“Brixton Baz can offer pingers, peelers and e-bombs to sweeten the ride.”

‘Who’s listening to me ?’ Rebel John yells,
Answers his own question through splintered teeth:

‘There are almost bare arsed cherry sweetie cutie pop teens
grind winding electric- lit side streets
dressed in poly satin shimmer
bosom tops and mini skirts
Everyone stares at them
Right or wrong
Their strawberry cheeked innocence is gone gone gone! 

They are pointy shoe office- worker shirker ‘s midday fant- a- fuck
Damson lips pillow pout ages terms and prices
In the shadows, you can hear the peppered hiss of Bessim
their thorn tongued Albanian pimp

London is a sly disguise
A bitch! Frankenstein’s mistress!
Her red lick stick wetting up
swinging her ankles from Blackfriars’s Bridge
wiping her clit for business

London, a cloud of crippled pigeons
on a fatherless tower block

An acid attack on a kohl-eyed hijabi 
Yesterday’s kung po chicken
A pair of period stained grass green panties lying in the street

London you’re a thread of hope to a half-burned Syrian refugee
But two whiskey punches on a black afro haired teen
Cold blooded capitalist king 
Left me with two limp legs and sick- dick urine

Welcome to the starry lips of commerce
pedalling smooth-tongued  scams and misery London will wed you
to debt for perpetuity

Read a suicide sonnet from the Gherkin
Saw a swiped wallet on the Northern line
And a peeping tom with red-moon eyes

I’m drunk! drunk!! drunk!

On your greasy plate of riches and cunt
London! Fucking London! Choking on a
toilet slurp of English Defence League HATE

A cathedral of broken promises
And wiggly finger pointing hypocrisy

Royston’s colonial grandpa
A white-gloved hand behind the palace window
A bleeding thumb in Whitehall
A parliament of crooks
The people trusted you!

You are a bare-knuckled wrestling bailiff
defecating on my porch

Stole my home! My rights my sacred ounce of dignity
Socially cleansed jewel of inequality 

Just a moped hit and run
A reused syringe, a perforated eardrum
Beware the river Thames swollen with sewage
the bitter blood of lost souls and dead fish 

London you are a cocaine spreadsheet
stapled to Steve the banker’s pumper dump
I know dirty Keith charges £50 quid a high
Brixton Baz can offer pingers peelers and e-bombs to sweeten the ride

London you’re still a Dickensian hangover
Voguing cabaret singer clowning around outside
The Royal Courts of Injustice
A hot spank on that cross-dressing Judge’s pink beaded g-string 

An anti-immigration van spot checking a ‘Muslim’
looking man
A Downtown Abbey class reunion
Fuckedupedyness in a hipster’s cup
Viceland rebellion all dressed up
A bloviated dinner guest who guffaws at racist jokes

A golden ladder to paradise
but only for the darling rich
three spoons of Beluga caviar at the Dorchester
Mouth open for  Promenade deals with lawyers and fixers

London how will you feed another crying bouquet of blacktop babies?

You are the crusted eye of depression when the day stands still
All the big talk and promises
An ad man’s bubble wrapped fantasy
A drain of motionless bodies
Sleeping  on cardboard boxes

London your walls are sighing
There is a non-stop train of dissension 
Sprouting weedy pockets of rebellion

But is it enough to change?
Enough to grow a conscience?

London – a beam of silver I once believed in
Now my book of tears
A bowl of nothing .’

Saira Viola


Illustration by Le Gun