â€œMr. Stone was commissioned by the mayor of London to design a â€œdry gardenâ€ of plants and flowers that use less water because England, widely associated with drizzle, is actually drying up.â€
â€œLONDON IS SO DRY,â€ Wall Street Journal, July 2006
Like a noon time drunkard one day
they drank too much.
Even the Buckingham Palace lawn is brown!
Macerated privet hedges
force William Jordan out of his Whitstable house to buy
divining rods and find
the fifteenth century well skulking in his front yard.
Under nappies flopping on a line
the marigold is defrocked.
The monthly virgin, Queen of October,
pales like the dusks of autumn.
This land now shallow
breathes its playa
onto begonias and geraniums.
Rowboats bottom too soon.
When there was enough, those lap â€“
happy Busy Lizzies impatiently
burst touch-me-not seeds when touched,
each pod a tumescent story.
Ginger lilies flounce and unfurl into dusty carpets
while olive vines claim the lattice,
and no one knows each otherâ€™s news
since the rubber tree dropped its inedible fig into a picnic.
Oh, but what of the birds and their privet berries!