Digging a Tunnel to China

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From the book My Hippo Has the Hiccups

I’m digging a tunnel to China.
A vertical shaft in the ground.
A passage bisecting the planet.
A cavern so deep, it’s profound.

I’ve picked out the perfect location.
I’ve started out back in the yard.
I think it may take me all summer.
I’m certain the work will be hard.

I’m using a coal-miner’s helmet
for working in darkness or shade.
My work boots are perfectly suited
for breaking the earth with my spade.

I’ll pummel the rocks with a pickaxe.
I’ll dredge up the dirt with my hands.
I’ll suction the sludgy deposits.
I’ll scoop out the pebbles and sands.

I’ll shovel out mountains of gravel.
I’ll excavate acres of soil.
I’ll dig ’til I feel like collapsing
from endless and backbreaking toil.

I’ll dig ’til I reach molten magma
and smash through the Earth’s outer crust,
then don my protective equipment,
as onward and downward I thrust.

My tunnel will come out in China,
or maybe Tibet or Japan,
and people will come from all over
to witness its breathtaking span.

And when my achievement’s completed
I’ll dust myself off with a grin,
then step to the edge of my tunnel
and throw all my Brussels sprouts in.

 — Kenn Nesbitt

Copyright © 2009. All Rights Reserved.

Reading Level: Grade 4

 


From the Book My Hippo Has the Hiccups


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