The Garden

This week, I was Commissioned to write for Future Venture Foundation’s event ‘Beyond Future’ to write a poem in response to answers written by Artists, Creative leaders, Funders and organisations. The question was ’What is the key ingredient for funding the arts and wider creativity well?’.  I have paired my work with some images  I  took at Fletcher Moss and in Alderly Edge during Manchester’s COVID tier 3 measures.

The Garden

Funding -

a heavy footed toddler 

blundering proudly.

a child with no manners

making up words,

turning out empty pockets 

Treading on bulbs and

pulling up plants. 

repotting, re-plotting.

asking - what powers live underneath the cold soil?

who grows in the shadowy edges?


drowning in watery language 

living probationally. 

waiting for autumn’s harvest 


disorderly daffodils 

to be nursed by spring rain. 


Roots gripping the ground like curled toes.

Whilst some are making the margins wider 

moving barrows to dredge up fermenting fear.

Unpruned bushes with flailing limbs

stretch generously into other plots.


no choice to have but to be 

unequivocally, eternally 


bowing at the feet of the trampling child

who knows 

the graceful, tasteful measurable


must look and speak the part.

to compliment the surrounding foliage. 

The Garden needs chaos 

speckled with fault.

needs rowdy hydrangeas,

to crawl up the brickwork 

needs friction that lights up the world

needs evergreen spirit.

and a patio where every artist is dancing,

and grass that’s as well-kept as it is enjoyed


Ruby-Ann Patterson

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