#10173
High walls:
    the weeded gardens.
    Retire to your tree/house monkey,
    old mister kangaroo won't come
    stomping the flowerbeds.
    Over the back fence
can't see the city for the trees
until leaves fill the gutters.
 
If this trickle is the last of the rains
then there will be water bans this summer.
Grass will turn brown, bird baths will run dry—
drought in the potted suburbs of Perth,
a land built from brick and garden,
immature avenues staked roadside
raised in the city.
 
How do you justify a tree?
    Who will water it and
    who will rake the leaves,
    who will train it and civilise it?
The hardy Geraldton Wax
flowers this time every year
hedging roadways.
Who will sweep up the fallen seed
before it strays and hatches
hungry to unlevel lawn.
 
You remember hard blind roots
errupting through the patio,
but a man smaller than a tree
flattened your childhood home—
now a quarter-garden duplex
and you worry where your children's
children will play? Don't.
Your sons are clearing new habitat
in the sandy northern suburbs.
The city is expanding,
it's all growing according to plan.


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