Drought

Thursday, 4th August

Trees-letter raff

Let it rain, let it rain, let it rain

• EDIE Raff’s letter (Care for trees went missing! July 28) prompted me to send this poem I wrote a few years ago in similar conditions.

FRANCES LEE, NW1

Late June in London – no rain for weeks –
people bask and picnic in the parched parks.

Street trees, planted so lately, optimistically,
wilt and wither (no one thought to water them you see).

Gardens struggle on, surviving not thriving,
sustained by evening draughts of precious saved water
till steady rain restores the earth again.

A sickly sky splutters sporadically,
threatening? promising?
a few paltry drops.

Two more months of summer,
a heatwave in the offing
but if more trees die, there will be no shade,
just hot dusty streets where few will choose to venture –
let it rain, let it rain, let it rain.
© Frances Lee

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