I am growing
My shell hurts
It hurts it hurts!
I cannot shed it
I try and try and try
I fight
I seek allies and help
I fight
One year, two years, nearly three

I’m free
My shell suddenly releases and slides off
I can feel my soft body expand
To my real size

They’re attacking!
Why why!
My brothers! My sisters!
Your claws hurt!
They are cutting me
Ow ow stop why!

I run
Scuttle sideways
Soft and clumsy
In the mud

Why why?
Oh, my wounds ache
By multiple claws
Deepest pain
In my heart
At this betrayal.

I hide
I sit
I think

It was so hard
To shed my shell
Why would they attack?

Their shells hurt too!
Their words
They were grabbing me
To try to see how I’d shed my shell
They were desperate
Oh they must be in such pain!

Can I forgive them?
Do they know not what they do?

I hide
I sit
I think
I heal

My shell is strong now
I am bigger

I will go forth
And see who is trying to shed their shell
I will try to protect the newly molted.

9 thoughts on “Molting

  1. stu06bloc9 says:

    i enjoyed the multiplicity of meaning in this piece, seemed to reference the earth as well as the creature, fabulous poem.
    (by the way – may i use a screenshot of our collaborative poem showing both our voices for some exploratory notes in my blog on collaborative poetry? (maybe on acp blog differently at later point)

  2. menomama3 says:

    This is so vivid and alive. Gorgeous, shell and all. As for those other people on, clearly they are Philistines.

    • drkottaway says:

      thank you … It’s funny, I’ve been writing at since 2007 and they hate poetry. It feels so weird to get positive comments. I’m not used to it. I have serial downvoters there… well, only three…..

  3. platosgroove says:


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