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.

Posted on blog 9/25/21 with recording.

There is a
Unique beauty
Watching someone
Shrug off
Their old skin

Skin that probably
Never really fit
Skin they found
Themselves ensnared in
Skin that served
A purpose of protection
Skin that is
No longer needed
Or desired

The privilege of
Bearing witness to
Inside and outside
Is not something
To take lightly

Not a chrysalis
Not a fucking butterfly
This is a growing
An out-growing
Sluffing off
Unnecessary baggage
Of self and past
Emerging gleaming
Iridescent and fierce
Multifaceted and beautiful

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