Sunday, November 20, 2016


I dig
I'm good at it
I spade
I poke
I prod
I scoop
I shovel
I chop
I grip with both hands
Pound the blade into the earth
So intent on the importance of my effort
Indignantly focused on maintaining my dignity
that I don't see when I chop through my own roots
roots that are in my way
On my way down
On my way down
On my way down
and then
I dig even deeper 

I feel like I have been digging 
for a very long time
I remember 
Digging in the sandbox 
when I was three 
somehow intrinsically 
I already knew what dirt tasted like
But I heaped a spoon with grit 
and filled my mouth with it 
as if the desert drying
and granular grinding 
was the normal state 
that my teeth and tongue 
were supposed to be in
It seemed like a logical decision 
We come from the dirt
Return to it when we are done
Made of the same elements 
Just visitors of space rocks and stardust
Or maybe it was just that
my body felt like it was full of dirt already

As of late
in the morning 
I dig my feet into the mattress 
Push myself out of bed
Dig the spoon into the grounds 
Push myself out the door 
Dig my toes into the concrete 
Push myself down the street 
When the rush is at its peak 
and my patience is pushed to its limit
a midday moment 
that mirrors 
the desperation 
of a midnight hour
teeters on the edge of depletion 
Its an insistent redundant surge 
of hopelessness stirred
by the futility of endless digging 
Seduced again
by the fertility 
of soft top soil
Finding myself in the dark 
only to look up for the light 
as I realize 
I have burrowed myself into a hole again
I inspect the dirt
Under my fingernails 
and instead of cleaning it out 
I wear it as a badge of work ethic
when really 
its just a resistance to 
coming clean 
Like a child who cries at bath time
Clinging to hiding behind the grime
from the digging of the day
Evidence of accomplishment 
Residue of duty and diligence 
Dirt tracks that prove existence 
Smears of meaning that dry to a crust
and then crack upon the surface of the skin
Traces of mud 
in exchange for the feeling 
that someone saw 
even the smallest grain of sand
Held your worth in their hands 
like overflowing handfuls of garden
or is it overflowing landfills of garbage
sometimes I cant tell
because old habits die hard
instinctually my heels dig in
and it is then
that I dig the deepest 
I dig my nails through my thickened skin
Between the fibers of the overworked muscle of the day
push my thumbs into the thick red clay
of my stubborn heart
Dig through the stories upon stories 
stacked deep within my mind
Wrap my fingers around my bones
Squeeze and shake  
with all my might
Until all the dirt and rocks 
and dust and bugs
and rats and snakes
and trolls and gremlins
and every last thing that could bite
falls out

It is not my intention
to be an undignified ditch digger
making new trenches just to have a path to follow
there is no need for my work ethic
to become my worth deficit
For there are already fields of holes
Yards of graves for the choosing
that I may fall into from time to time 
I don't need to dig more for myself
Instead I need to dig my way out
I tell myself it is with loving gesture
that I claw and scratch 
Cut through the fog of my vision 
Dig through my irreverence
through my sarcasm
through projected self judgement
It digs through me
as I witness it digging through you
Reverence is unearthed
revealed through the realization
that the respect lacking in my words and actions towards you
reflects the respect lacking in my words and actions towards me  
I've learned that
really doesn't work
It often makes things worse 
lessons learned better late than never
I just wish could learn them
without the inflicted casualties
and self sacrifices along the way
But I digress
because I don’t know what else I am here to do
but dig through my life
Dig through my dirt
So I keep digging
and digging
and digging
and digging
and digging
and I suppose I will
until I realize
that I will I never reach the bottom
if I continue
to insist 
on digging.

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