Dust and ashes in a vertical no man’s land
Block-jacked upwards in contempt for ‘streets in the sky’

No more the chequered lights of a Broadway Boogie Woogie
Silver slivers in the early hours made way for the grey of the First World War
Meantime the furious orange that gives its name to burnt

First the flames engulf the tower, then the tower is all-consuming
‘Grenfell changes everything,’ says the fresh-faced council leader.
Wheeling his way to a blow-up bed in the sports hall nearby
The boy with cerebral palsy reports the council is speaking air

Across the city scant resources scattered in panicked disarray
Tenants decanted, doormats banned, perspective binned for the day

Grenfell comes loping greedily, echoes of Beowulf, towering above
But Grenfell has no mind nor movement, unless we make it so
We may choose the allegorical, if that’s how best to recount
(And of the dead and injured, not only the amount)
But we must have clear-headed and categorical
When that’s what it takes to remake.