Thomas Coston

Preying At The Ten Bells

As the night creeps in,
Smoke from London's hearths descend,
Swirling - dancing with the fog,
Haloing gaslights with a thickened haze,
Cloaking a flash of a six inch blade

Shadows become a blackened abyss
Frightened stragglers scurry to a place that's secure and bliss.
For a murderous madman has terrorized this den
Of prostitution and the criminally bent.

On the East End, where self-respect isn't known,
Lives poverty and predation in a marriage of woe.
Four pence for a bed in public housing
To be turned out if you're short a farthing.

Compassion isn't known on these cobblestone streets.
Christ Church is Whitechapel's only sanctuary;
An edifice that towers over a public house
Where denizens of the East End are known to carouse.

‘Tis a place a predator can come to prey
To exalt in bawdy hymnals with a drink.
Espying whores for a sacrificial blade.
At The Ten Bells there are plenty to slay.

A gal must work in these desperate times.
A stiff drink will help her fortify
To face the darkness into the phantom's abode.
A peril everyone on the East End knows.

Off goes Mary Jane Kelly,
A green-eyed lass that's somewhat pretty.
She hesitates at the threshold and takes a deep breath
Wish her well on her business endeavor
And pray she doesn't encounter Jack the Ripper.

Topic(s) of this poem: history, london, murder, terror

Poem Submitted: Saturday, October 10, 2020

Add this poem to MyPoemList
4,7 out of 5
9 total ratings
rate this poem

Comments about Preying At The Ten Bells by Thomas Coston

  • Thomas CostonThomas Coston (10/19/2020 2:28:00 PM)

    Thanks to all who took the time to read and comment on my poem. This is the first time I've had my work featured as a member poem. Who knows if it will happen again. Again, thanks for your gracious comments.

    Report Reply
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Sylvia Frances ChanSylvia Frances Chan (10/19/2020 12:09:00 AM)

    Keen observations noted and created in poem, Most deserving this choice by Poem Hunter and Team, I have enjoyed every line in this marvelous poem.
    CONGRATULATIONS as The Member Poem Of The Day.5 Stars full vote.
    The scenes and observations very well captured, since I know London too.
    But poet Thomas Sir. likes bit eerie things as a true citizen of London, the poet's conclusion in the last line of the last stanza. Wonderful!

    Report Reply
    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Mahtab BangaleeMahtab Bangalee (10/18/2020 11:27:00 PM)

    ‘Tis a place a predator can come to prey
    To exalt in bawdy hymnals with a drink.
    Espying whores for a sacrificial blade.
    At The Ten Bells there are plenty to slay.....great write about the terrorizing mind thru the thick darkness of night beside the holiness of mind; your descriptive words are very thrilling to read; congrats for being selected as POD...5****

    Report Reply
    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • L Milton Hankins (10/18/2020 7:15:00 PM)

    An exceptionally well-written poem depicting London's Whitehapel and the terrible things that went on there.

    Report Reply
    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Hannatu Adamu (10/18/2020 6:20:00 PM)

    This is extremely sad!

    Report Reply
    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Shaun CronickShaun Cronick (10/18/2020 4:28:00 PM)

    Well done and congratulation's to you Thomas.
    Your poem most deserving of Member Poem of the Day.
    And this is the first time a more than finely written/imagined darkness poem to any recollection has earned that accolade.
    For that, again the highest salutations and kudos to you Thomas.
    You are the best writer of horror/darkness on this site, thank you and take care.

    Report Reply
    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Cowboy Ron WilliamsCowboy Ron Williams (10/18/2020 10:51:00 AM)

    Very entertaining, Thomas!
    Congrats on poem of the day!

    Report Reply
    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Dr Dillip K SwainDr Dillip K Swain (10/18/2020 8:43:00 AM)

    Thought provoking....a poignant write! Many congratulations for this great work of yours being featured today as Poem of the Day! Top 🌟

    Report Reply
    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Edward Kofi LouisEdward Kofi Louis (10/18/2020 3:02:00 AM)

    Shadows! !
    Blackened abyss! !
    With the muse of Jack the Ripper!


    Thanks for sharing this poem with us.

    Report Reply
    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Ruberto Lambardo (10/18/2020 2:20:00 AM)

    All the marks of a multiple member. Not knowing whether you are a yank or a pommie. Photo waste of space.

    Report Reply
    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Bernard F. AsuncionBernard F. Asuncion (10/18/2020 1:39:00 AM)

    A well crafted poem of the day.
    Full of drama and suspense.
    A thriller indeed. Congrats
    on your featured piece...5 stars*****

    Report Reply
    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Khairul AhsanKhairul Ahsan (10/18/2020 12:19:00 AM)

    I was the first to comment on this poem about a week ago. Now I write to congratulate the poet for the well deserved honour of having his poem selected as the 'Member Poem of the Day'!

    Report Reply
    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Shaun CronickShaun Cronick (10/16/2020 5:19:00 AM)

    Thomas another mesmerizing great write that makes the reader feel transported back to Whitechapel for your poetry reels in every viewer and takes them on a dark journey.
    A superb write! And poor Mary Kelly was the Ripper's last victim and with such a terrible demise.
    Thanks Thomas for writing and sharing this dark and most descriptive poem.
    Take care and five diabolical bible-black stars.

    Report Reply
    7 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Paul T P BurnePaul T P Burne (10/10/2020 9:34:00 AM)

    Great for Ripper enthusiasts and very well written

    Report Reply
    5 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Khairul AhsanKhairul Ahsan (10/10/2020 7:56:00 AM)

    A terrible situation indeed!

    Report Reply
    5 person liked.
    0 person did not like.



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags