WH Davies was a Welsh poet who knew the hostels and streets of London, and the night wanderers who could not go indoors through the coldest winters. They are back on the streets and in the closed shop doorways of Canterbury as I write. Will.
They hear the bell of midnight toll, And shiver in their flesh and soul; They lie on hard, cold wood or stone, Iron, and ache in every bone; They hate the night: they see no eyes Of loved ones in the starlit skies. They see the cold, dark water near; They dare not take long looks for fear They'll fall like those poor birds that see A snake's eyes staring at their tree. Some of them laugh, half-mad; and some All through the chilly night are dumb; Like poor, weak infants some converse, And cough like giants, deep and hoarse." W. H. Davies