Learn from the Lowly

Do not be squeamish about the reptilian way.
It is in the leaving that release comes.
Rid oneself of dead skin,
not as a phoenix turns to ash
and rises again.
Rather as the serpent who uncoils,
shrugs off its past
and continues on.


Quadrille (44 words: no more no less; not including the title) written for dVerse. De asks us to write a quadrille that includes the word “leave” or a form of the word. dVerse is a virtual bar for poets and opens today at 3 PM Boston time. Come try your hand and post a quadrille of your own or just come to imbibe the words of others! dVerse offers prompts on Mondays and Tuesdays and most Thursdays are Open Link Night — a time to post a poem of your choice, without restraint or motivation of a prompt. Hope you’ll join us!

41 thoughts on “Learn from the Lowly

    • lillian August 29, 2016 / 4:22 pm

      Thank you, Victoria! I’d had this kernal of an idea in my journal — shed snake skin — for several months. Been turning it over and over in my mind and voila — this prompt connected. So glad you enjoyed. Shall be over to my reading in the AM!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. cindyreader1 August 29, 2016 / 4:46 pm

    I have never tried a poem like that. May have to try my hand at it! I enjoyed yours!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian August 29, 2016 / 5:41 pm

      Yes do! And post on dVerse….I love quadrilles 🙂


  2. whimsygizmo August 29, 2016 / 7:18 pm

    Wonderful, Lillian. My son LOVES snakes, and so I for one like the photo. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian August 29, 2016 / 8:05 pm

      Glad you enjoyed! 🙂 Show your son the pic!


  3. Truedessa August 29, 2016 / 7:26 pm

    Oh, this is so symbolic that it made me smile. Yes, sometimes we need to shed that old skin and begin anew. Cool take on the prompt.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian August 29, 2016 / 8:06 pm

      Thank you! Always glad to make you smile. 🙂


    • lillian August 30, 2016 / 8:51 am

      I know…it’s a wierd one, right? But glad you enjoyed.


    • lillian August 30, 2016 / 8:52 am

      Many thanks! I always love to see your replies. My reading is postponed to later this morning…


  4. Bodhirose August 29, 2016 / 10:23 pm

    Growing up I had a brother that was fascinated with snakes and would often bring them home much to our mother’s dismay, but perhaps that’s why I don’t feel squeamish about them. When I see them in the yard I always feel that they’re a healthy part of the eco system. And yes, did love your metaphor for beginning anew. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian August 30, 2016 / 8:54 am

      Well….I wrote this — had the idea of a snake shedding its skin written down in my journal for a while. But in reality? Although we can really learn from the “reptilian way,” I am not a fan of the slithery things!


  5. Sanaa Rizvi (@rizvi_sanaa) August 30, 2016 / 1:51 am

    Oh I love how you use phoenix ashes and snake skin as a contrast here ❤ Yes we must strive to leave behind the past and move on ❤ Beautifully executed.

    Lots of love,

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian August 30, 2016 / 8:55 am

      I always look for your hearts Sanaa. This morning I am blessed with two! 🙂


  6. katiemiafrederick August 30, 2016 / 2:28 am

    SMiLes.. the reptile
    bRain.. sustains
    uS aliVe..
    when aLL
    but the
    wiLL to survivE oN MoRE..:)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. kim881 August 30, 2016 / 2:37 am

    A great take on the prompt, Lillian. I love snakes and have often been mesmerised by the shedding of skin, which is indeed an apt metaphor for a new beginning.Snakes must have quite a few of them!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian August 30, 2016 / 8:56 am

      We can indeed learn from the slitering things in this way. Most times, I guess since the Adam and Eve story, they are seen as evil creatures. But — in this way, we can indeed learn from them 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Anita Lubesh August 30, 2016 / 7:01 am

    Very good metaphor and symbolism, and unique use of the prompt. Love the graphics.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian August 30, 2016 / 8:57 am

      Glad you enjoyed, Anita! Busy here this morning — so will get to my reading at dVerse a little bit later.

      Liked by 1 person

    • lillian September 6, 2016 / 2:42 pm

      Thanks, Walter. I’ve always disliked snakes — but somehow was taken with the idea of the reptile shedding its skin. Replying late here. Did the news make it your way about the recent shed snake skin found by a lake in Maine? They just determined it was an Anaconda!!!! Very glad I do not live near that lake!


  9. Sasha A. Palmer August 30, 2016 / 6:58 pm

    “It is hard to cast the skin.” First De’s poem made me remember Kaa’s words, and now yours, Lillian. It is hard, but it’s the only way to grow.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian September 6, 2016 / 2:27 pm

      I so agree. Sometimes we must shed the past to move on.


  10. Rosemary Nissen-Wade August 30, 2016 / 9:08 pm

    Great message, great image.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian September 6, 2016 / 2:28 pm

      Glad you enjoyed, Rosemary.


  11. lynn__ August 31, 2016 / 8:21 am

    Excellent lesson to “learn from the lowly” about shedding our old skin…thanks, Lillian!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian September 6, 2016 / 2:43 pm

      Yes indeed…..it is important to learn to live with our memories and move on at the same time.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Mish August 31, 2016 / 3:39 pm

    Nature has so many lessons for us. We just have to observe. I love that you chose a good ol’ snake for this lovely message! Wonderful quadrille, Lil.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian September 6, 2016 / 2:44 pm

      Thanks, Mish! Late to reading, posting, replying — took some time “unplugged” and getting back to it now. Glad you enjoyed!


  13. sarahsouthwest September 4, 2016 / 4:11 am

    I like this. And I like the idea of growing and renewing without destroying ourselves completely..

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian September 6, 2016 / 2:44 pm

      Excellent point, Sarah. The core remains even as we move on.

      Liked by 1 person

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