"Dig my grave and dig it deep"

  • Little Lupa
    13 years ago

    Has anyone notice how everyone uses these lines in poems, and then try to claim them...I mean yea sure it's alright but, give credit to whom you seen it from.

    "Dig my grave and dig it deep, marble stone from head to feet. Upon my grave place a dove to show the world I died for love."
    -Unknown (www.coolquotescollection.com/Poetry7.aspx)

    "They dug her grave and dug it deep
    And placed white lilies at her feet
    And on her breast they placed a dove
    To show that she had died for love "
    -The Maiden's Prayer

    So dig my grave and dig it deep,
    and plant marijuana at my feet
    And by my side, a snow white dove
    to show the world I died for his love.
    -Unknown

    "Dig my grave and dig it deep
    Place red roses at my feet
    Upon my chest a pure white dove
    To show the world I died for love "
    -A PRISON BOY

    "Dig my grave and dig it deep,
    Place red roses at my feet
    Upon my chest a turtle Dove..
    to show the world I died for love"
    -Simon Deacon

  • Little Lupa
    13 years ago

    Not really, alot of famous authors quote from other poems or stories. If credit is given then it is allowed, because then evey line would be copyrighted and would be un useable even the lines "Dig my grave and dig it deep wouldn't be allowed'

  • Little Lupa
    13 years ago

    Thats what I was saying, if you use a line in your poem which you took from another poem you need to give credit. The above are variations of the same poem.

  • Phantasmagoria
    13 years ago

    I dk. I can't say I notice that a lot. What I do notice is that even famous people like Jay-Z and other random people quote Friedrich Nietzsche. "What does not kill me only makes me stronger." No one EVER gives him credit, half the people in the world who've heard that saying probably don't even know who Friedrich Nietzsche is. It really bothers me sometimes. >_<

  • Gem
    13 years ago

    Thats a bit crap.
    I wrote a poem a long time ago with the words, "Dig my grave and dig it deep" and i can honestly say i had never heard of any of those poets you have quoted there or read it elsewhere.
    So how have i plagurised? By writing something by coincidence purely by accident.
    I don't think so somehow.

  • Wyneth replied to Little Lupa
    4 years ago

    The poem actually goes
    Once upon a time where I dwell
    I mett a boy I liked so well
    Until one day he sat me free
    And sat another upon his knee
    He told her things he never told me
    I found out why
    She was more beautiful than I
    I went home to cry in bed
    Not a word to my mother was said
    My father came home from work that night
    Looked both ways left and right
    In through the doors that he broke
    He found me hanging from a rope
    On the dresser there was a note
    That read
    Dig my grave
    Dig it deep
    Marble stone from head to feet
    On my grave place a dove
    To show the world I died for love
    I wrote that 20 years ago in high school
    I can't believe it gets used like it does
    I was shocked to even find someone talking about it!

  • Milly Hayward
    3 years ago, updated 3 years ago

    I cant say I have noticed but then I have a terrible memory at times. I once read somewhere that there is no such thing as a new story. I guess tin the case of poetry hat there are only so many descriptive words in the world and whilst we all have different ways of putting them together there must be the remote chance that a writer could just coincidently create a line that is similar if not the same as someone elses way of putting it together.

    There is also the chance that something you read years previously might suddenly be pulled out of your subconsious memory as a line or lyric without you realising that you had heard it somewhere. In the writers mind he might think he had just invented it.

    I dont think (or I hope they dont) people set out to be deliberate plagerists because if they did it would be on more than a few words or lines and it would happen in more than one poem because cheating is a habit not a one off event and easily proven. I just think that there are so many poets all taking words from the same English vocabulary so inevitably some overlaps will appear.

    Getting back to the original comments. I do agree thowever that if you deliberately choose to use someone elses lines then of course you should be upfront and credit the writer.

    Milly x

  • Ange replied to Wyneth
    2 years ago

    What year did you write this? If you don’t mind me asking.

  • BossLadie14 replied to Wyneth
    7 months ago


    In 1989 at 16 years old, while in my junior year in high school I wrote a poem about loving someone and committing suicide by hanging. It ended with “dig a grave and dig it deep with marble stones from head to feet. On my grave place a white dove to show the world I died for love.” It was a very dark time in my life and I find it both sad and funny that after all these years I’m now not only seeing it in various places but finding so many other people taking credit for it. I had never heard any version of it before in my life and at the time that I wrote it computers and the internet weren’t even a thing yet! I’m a firm believer that absolutely no human thought or idea has NEVER been unique to just one person. I mean how many times has a person seen a brand new invention or a turn of phrase and thought “hey, I thought of that invention or said that phrase. Isn’t that funny. What a small world.” This was all long before ideas were patented as “proprietary property”. Yes it’s mildly disappointing but I’m not angry. I have proof that my poem was printed in my yearbook and submitted for publication and you don’t see me getting upset about not getting credit. I’m actually a bit flattered.

  • Poet on the Piano replied to BossLadie14
    7 months ago

    I don't believe phrases or idioms are necessary plagiarism, but it's what you do with it and how you shape the poem that makes it seem purposeful or not. "dig my grave and dig it deep" seems like a common line, as there are not further explanations.

    However, anything else added to it to specifically reference the marbles stones and white dove, I would say is plagiarism.

    It could be one's subconscious hearing this and applying it to one's poem, and I definitely agree to an extent that nothing is truly unique. Inspiration is one thing, and interpretation, but almost line for line, the same context, is where it gets questionable for me.

    Especially since all you have to do is Google the lines, and the origins are from a folk song in the 1920s:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Butcher%27s_Boy_(folk_song)

    There are many slight variations of the last stanza, but almost all of the poems are the same idea and story. The concept of losing someone to suicide by that method is certainly not unique and has affected people all around the world, but the closing lines and images seem far too similar to ever claim as one's own. Perhaps I'm wrong, and it's unintentional, but I don't really believe in coincidences. Maybe someone heard the original song somewhere, or had the idea passed on to them and, without knowing it, adapted it into their poem, thinking it was their own. Or maybe the imagery of "dig" and "grave" and "marble" and the symbolism of doves was bound to be placed together.

  • Melody Crockett replied to Wyneth
    2 weeks ago, updated 2 weeks ago

    Honestly I wrote one very similar to this so we both had to have heard it somewhere and thought we were writing it I wrote mine 26 years ago and it went:

    In a place where I did dwell
    I met a boy I loved so well
    He came and took that love from me
    And now he wants to set me free
    I even know the reason why
    She was so much prettier than I
    I came home and cried on my bed
    Not a word to my mother I said
    My father came home
    Late that night
    He searched for me
    From left to right
    He came upstairs
    The door he broke
    And found me hanging
    From a rope
    And on my jeans
    Was a note that said:
    Dig my grave, dig it deep
    Marble stone from head to feet
    And on the ground
    Please place a dove
    To show the world
    I died for love.

    I was 13 going through a breakup with a boy I dated who ended up sleeping with my step-sister when I wouldn’t sleep with him. I had this poem put in a poetry contest through poetry.com when I was 17 and it was placed in one of their books. Now seeing that it’s been used in so many other things the only explanation is that I made my own version after I maybe saw it somewhere. Even though I don’t ever remember reading it or hearing anywhere. But how else would this poem have been copied by so many other people if not by this way. The internet wasn’t even a thing when I wrote my version. I didn’t have dial-up in my house until I was 14. So the internet isn’t an option. Now the internet is probably how it’s spread but back then? The only way would have been by reading it or hearing it.

  • Larry Chamberlin
    6 days ago

    The phrase, "Dig my grave and dig it deep," itself lends itself to easy construction: the motif of finality, the need to hide from reality, to escape "deeply" and the alliteration (all those Ds and gutturals).

    In the world of poetic phrases this is hardly one to fight over.
    One early version was from a traditional Irish folk song: I Once Loved A Lass.
    See one version here: https://www.irish-folk-songs.com/i-once-loved-a-lass-song-lyrics-and-chords.html