The Digging Of Graves

(Written On Remembrance Day Sunday, 2016)

There is nothing quite like the sound
and texture
of the pickaxe head sinking deep
into the sopping wet
afternoon, Wintertime earth.
An hour or so after
the funerals
have finished
their processions for the day.
‘Cracking The Crust’ he calls it,
scalp the top
and take her down a foot or so.
Fracture its compactness,
disturb its density,
give it movement,
time to readjust and breathe.
Ready for the spade work,
depth and proper grafting
early on the misty morrow.
He’ll be up to his labourer’s elbows
whilst other folk are yawning
and still breaking their fast.
Warm sweat and cold steam breath,
a-heaving up and over.
A gardener of things now gone,
physically planting for the Spiritual.
As solemn and silent
as the marble angels and crosses
that surround him.
He cuts those bottom corners expertly
as the evening bells toll in the distance.

Paul Tristram is a widely published Welsh writer who deals in the Lowlife, Outsider, and Outlaw genres.  He wrote his first poem as a teenager following his release from the (Infamous) Borstal ‘HMP Portland’, and he has been creating Literary Terrorism ever since.  His novel ‘Crazy Like Emotion’ published by Close To The Bone Publishing is available to purchase right here Read other articles by Paul, or visit Paul's website.