Monday Poem

Digging Potatoes with the Young

……….. — for George and Dacy

last week I dug potatoes
with the young
—granddaughter and son
I showed them how to sink the fork
in ground a bit away from desiccated tuber stalks
by leaning their slight weight in to force it down
then leveraging tines by length of haft
to bring the harvest slowly from below
so as not to bruise the spuds with too-rude heft

they saw the red roots rise by fork from aromatic soil
some with dangling threads attached
some already gnawed, previously shared,
some inevitably speared by fork and set aside
for sooner use, others for the moment spared
for winter use, to be stored then later speared

they raked their hands through tumbled dirt
to find the ones they may have missed
grinning when they found still-buried ones
—the russet square-inch sides of those by chance exposed

“there’s one,” they said,
“— and there!”
they pawed excited through the earth with me
from far start of row to here

Jim Culleny