Sometimes terrace housing opens-out onto the street outside,
But sometimes there’s a handkerchief of garden as a buffer zone.
It always serves as shorthand, a barometer of homestead pride
Where neighbours draw-up judgements by how much it’s overgrown –
Some are full of crazy-paving, some are full of wilted heads,
Some are full of pots and planters, scraps of lawn, or gnomes in white,
Some contain abandoned sofas, others dandelion beds,
And some attempt to grow a forest, blocking ev’ry shred of light.