the hole

Poem #1 from: Memoir of a Dog

Back to Memoir of a Dog – Introduction

when I was a child
my first dog
was a black lab-cross
called sandy

I never knew
why we named him that
but that’s what he was

we had a few dogs
over the years
but that first one
is the one I remember

the one that was my mate
went with me
out after the bunnies
riding the bike
walking in the bush

I cried when he died
thought my heart had broken



I’m standing in a hole
in a garden bed
at the back of the house

the hole
is up to mid-calf
but I’ve got to go
a long way deeper yet
I am hurling the crowbar
with all my strength
into soil that’s mostly clay
and crumbling rock

it’s hard work
and I can’t see
what I’m doing

I am crying

while I prepare
the first grave
I’ve ever had to dig
for a loved one

I think my heart
may finally
have broken

crowbar and mound - 35%

© Frank Prem 2009

Memoir of a Dog Poem 2: selection process: narrowing the field


11 thoughts on “the hole

  1. the first time you have to physically dig a grave for a beloved one, a 4 legged almost human companion, solo – hits so hard – every spade or crowbar, or pick-axe thud, every damn clod of clay and earth, rips the heart as the salt water tears run down your face – and you are blinded by grief and a pain that makes no sense – because the intensity of the emotion is often more than we can even express for a human loved on – and the motion, the physicality is not, what we hope, in the moment, a relief – the release only comes well after the exhaustion ….

    beautifully written Frank – and so heart-full …

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My parents have kept dogs since they were married. Everyone was heartbroken when our last one died, 3 years ago. We do not talk about them nor do we watch dog movies since. I cannot bring myself to talk or write about him without crying.
    I guess they just leave us here, heartbroken

    Liked by 1 person

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