In the late 1970s, in Camberwell, Eddie Brindley gave me the following poem
about the casual employment office in Mortimer Street, London:

What do you think as you pass them by,
Sleeping in boxes under the sky?
No sheltering roof or nice clean bed,
The pavement a pillow for their head.

Don’t rush past, just stand and wait,
See what happens about half-past-eight.
They’ll be killing each other to get a job,
For the price of a bed and a couple of bob.

You’ll never get rich at Mortimer Street,
Ten bob an hour all day on your feet,
Curses in the kitchen, the pots and pans,
Cleaning the grates, the floors and the cans.

To most it’s just the price of a drink,
To help to forget the fleas and the stink
And another night on weary feet
Or box on pavement outside Mortimer Street.

© Eddie Brindley

Legs in boxes Mortimer St.