Jan/Feb 2009 Poetry Special Feature


by Greta Bolger

Artwork by Robert Hoover


At seven, digging a hole
to China seems eminently
achievable: us here, them
there, and nothing but dirt
in between, or so it seems.

Most parents indulge
the digger, shovel twice
her size, grunting and
determined. They know that
in hours, the shallow pit will be

abandoned for more immediate,
less laborious satisfactions.
By seventeen, the schemer-
digger is intimate with her own
hot core and how to burrow to it,

hollow belly glistening with the
oil of invitation, trembling pallid
flesh of her paramour hovering above,
hungry for the fracas, rich furrow open
for the brawl that ends in truce and holler,

arms and legs splayed and limp, throats
raw with shouting, air cloudy with smoke
of wanton warriors in their quest for
satiation, sweet sting of battle abating,
shovel standing at attention for the next foray.


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