Digger Down

Digger Down

Joint Third Place in the Letter Review Prize for Poetry

Poetry by Brian Kelly

December 15, 2022

A digger driver dug today

without palaver

launching levers

lifting loads

today a field 

tomorrow roads.

A digger driver warm today

a sweaty lather 

on face and head

but still he worked

his generation 

never shirked.

A digger driver died today

a cab cadaver.

Heart gave way

or so they said.

His simple lunch 

of cheese and bread

strewn on his lap

his hands and head.

An orphaned digger cried today

mourning its father.

It burrowed deep 

as if for oil.

The bucket churned

the virgin soil

as if a grave 

for a man of toil.

Brian Kelly lives in rural County Down in Northern Ireland, halfway between his home city of Belfast and the beautiful mountains of Mourne. He is now retired from full-time employment having worked in the Healthcare and University sectors for some 38 years. Despite some alleged prowess in English at school he procrastinated successfully from embracing any creative writing during his career! In the past two years he has taken up his fountain pen and finally mastered two-fingered typing to revisit his love of writing. Brian has been fortunate to have both poetry and prose submissions accepted for publication in the UK and USA in this time. It’s never too late to start!

Artwork by Kita Das.