top of page

Cheryl Byler Keeler

Three Days of Digging


…we kneel

on the resilient ground

trying to befriend the soil

we must become.

--Linda Pastan, Espaliered Pear Trees


Three days of digging in the dirt I must 

become. Kneeling on, bending over,

bowing to the lively soil.


My fingernails teem with bacteria,

endorphin peace of the gardener.

I move slowly and try to gather grace.


Dig lungwort, hostas, blue-eyed grass;

shovel compost, do not think.

My fingers are busy


but I keep my mind flat.

It is necessary not to figure things out.

It is necessary to dig and be dirty


to kneel and bend and bow.

bottom of page