The Rainbow Road (Rua Barão de Sabrosa)

Ginásio do Alto do Pina
The rainbow road
on the long steep hill.
You climb beyond
the former cinema, now a church,
you tread on dirt
and rub the grit from your eyes,
the cars occasionally pass
and beep horns at nothing,
the motorbikes go
as fast as they can
with no one to race
and nowhere to go,
the gypsy women walk
a few paces behind
their free-roaming kids,
the gypsy men play music
and gaze up towards
the surrounding balconies for coins,
the old men fill the cafes
and order small glasses of beer
and cups of red wine,
the smell of coffee floats
out of every little open café
and into the street,
the elderly ladies struggle
with their shopping bags
up and down the hill,
their feet on slippery cobblestones,
their legs in aches and pains,
the rainbow road
on the long steep hill,
the pigeons inhabit
the crumbling buildings
and cry all day and night,
the dogs of neighbours often bark
to counter the birds
and passing cars
and on top of the hill
near derelict flats,
the community’s heart,
a former gymnasium,
now a bar with a dance hall
where no one dances
but old folks and nearby families
pass through for communal gatherings,
where bouts of chat
and laughter conquer poverty
and the trappings
of the Portuguese economy
for all the residents
of the nearby narrow streets
of the rainbow road
on the long steep hill,
just a couple footsteps away
from a former royal palace,
one thing for sure,
a king wouldn’t live here now
but as for me,
I wouldn’t live anywhere else

– Lennie Bezwik


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About bezwik

Lennie Bezwik is an English poet and lyricist who lives in Spain. Before getting into poetry, Bezwik was part of the London based UK Hip Hop scene, writing songs, producing tracks and performing live rap. Over the last few years, Bezwik has done a lot of travelling, drinking and writing. Nowadays, he sneaks off to dingy little Spanish bars at night and writes poems in his notebook. His biggest inspirations are homelessness, unemployment, booze, love and being dreamy.

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