Digging by Kate Marshall Flaherty

Poet name: Kate Marshall Flaherty Poem name: Digging Poem: 		Where did it come from, this call 		to the interior— you will tree plant in BC forests, four hours by chopper from Prince George.  The cork boots, belt and shovel bandanas and bungees, tin stove and tarp all packed, the many days’ drive in an ancient van sealed with shiny hope and duct tape.  		Your puppy ebullience bounding over the phone, perhaps naïve, perhaps full-faith, both/and— 		it is your own interior you want to dig into, four months without power, a phone, posts, or a store—four months of trekking deep into tree floor and spring flora, steel spikes on your boots, hard resolve to stay, 		sweat, survive the entire time, learn thriving.  Today I bought you a simple bar of bio soap, pocket knife, tin cup—you’ll grow a beard, have much to reflect on 		in your solitary tent, alone with your shovel and bag, no one to banter with 		but bears and the wind.  		You say you’ve been meditating daily, as you tighten your core and build up your back strength— 		you want to take only what can fit in your pack. I see your shoulders lift, your mind 		learning to unburden. End of poem.  Credits and bio:  Copyright © Kate Marshall Flaherty ”Digging” was shortlisted for the 2021 Mitchel Poetry Prize and is published in an anthology by Image Journal with the winners, 2022. Kate Marshall Flaherty has five books of poetry, and has been published in numerous Canadian and International Anthologies. She guides StillPoint Writing Workshops on line and writes spontaneous P.O.E.M.s, “Poem Of the Extraordinary Moments” for folks for charity during the pandemic. See her performance Poetry and workshops at katemarshallflaherty.ca