The Caterpillar flops out of her morphic egg

Exhausted by the effort of breaking out

Immediately sinking her teeth into the leaf

That had held her safely within the egg-cluster

Industrially masticating her way

Through volumes of foliage

Until the pinnacle is reached

And she crawls sleepily

Into a sheltered section of the tree

That’s been her universe

Spinning a protective chrysalis around herself

Like a Mummy wrapping itself in death

What metamorphosis takes place

Inside that shrivelled looking case?

Her body becoming a primordial soup

With a predetermined outcome

DNA – melting and re-moulding

Creating a new life form –

Not by procreation

But out of its own detritus

New veins and guts and eyes and limbs form

All under this magic cloak

Hidden from view

Finally, a split in the protective skin

A spindly leg feels its way out

Then an antenna wriggles free.

The case rips open as the insect struggles out

The whole bedraggled creature

Emerges from the crumpled shell

Wet and shaky on her new limbs

The fragile legs move position

So that the newly formed wings

Face towards the sun

Drying them – ready for flight

So light, a delicate fragility to them

Sparkling like a soap bubble on a wire frame

(How strange must that feel?

To have been a creature of Gravity,

Then suddenly to have wings).

Is it the same soul?

Or does the caterpillar soul die

And a butterfly soul emerge?

A breeze catches her now dried wings

Lifting her out of her earthbound state

And then to fly!!

To soar with the wind, lifting her up.

Swirling with the leaves and the breeze

The sun catching the colours of her wings

Like a lantern show

Then she is gone

Off to start the life-circle again

© Kate McClelland 2015

2 thoughts on “Caterpillar

  1. My little girl and I brought home a caterpillar once, by accident, as it must have been attached to one of the wild flowers we picked. Munchkin wanted us to take care of it so I obliged and we were fortunate enough to witness the splendid transformation a few days later.

    It was quite magical — both the metamorphosis and the delight beaming from my daughter’s eyes.

    Thanks for stopping by our blog. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

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