In The Door of the One-Eyed Dog

In the door of the one-eyed dog
A Chinaman stood to look inside
In the darkness, the pool table stood like a wooden horse
As the dog walked away into the moonlight

As the autumn rains blitzed the road
The one-eyed dog wandered lonesome
Hanging his head with resignation
His one good eye upon the market place

In the door of the one-eyed dog
A shard of shadow glinted darkly
The hidden stairs creaked underfoot
A mirror flashed suddenly bright in the lightning

The Chinese restaurant closed its curtains
The bar echoed to some unearthly music
A strange woman with a bottle of wine
Stopped me outside selling her perfumes

In the door of the one-eyed dog
The dog’s white tearless eye is frowning
As he alone listens to the druid’s song
That echoes down the East End streets

People walk around him as he sails
Like a blind ship in the waters of the night
His gloomy countenance sees an inner dock
With the warehouses of heaven and hell

This is about a pub at the end of Salmon Lane. It had an atmosphere of pre-war roughness. Nearly all the East End pubs have gone now, even the best of them.


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