Skip to main content

Walking Underground

ISSUE:  Fall 2004

Why did it fascinate me so much,
that ditch my father had dug
in the front lawn to fix
a faulty pipe? I couldn’t keep

my eyes from turning towards it,
black opening to nothingness
where once I’d run and played,
held up by hard ground.

Dank otherworldly smell breathing
upwards so coolly in the dusk,
chopped roots dangling from its
slick and crumbling walls.

And why did I wish to be lifted
down into it, what would
make a child ask to be
placed within that

grave-like indenture in the earth?
Each step I took there I felt
the clutch and suck of thick
wet mud, a downward

pull I’d never touched before.
And why, after he’d raised
me up again and I looked back
to see the footprints

my new red rubber boots had
left behind, did I begin to cry,
as if some part of me
would remain there forever?

How could I have known
what journey had begun?


This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Recommended Reading