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by Cate Laurier

I shed my skin and

enter the chrysalis.
In that still dark space
I hold myself tight,
squeezing my eyes shut,
uncertain of what will come next.

My only choice now
is to be carried on a faith
in an unknown
that has its own flow.

I tremble and
can hold on no longer
to the old form
that defined my existence.

I surrender to the expert
touch of your hands
taking me apart.

My cells dissolve
into liquid formlessness.
My solidity falls apart
like seaweed on the ocean floor.

I am sightless
as I wait in the lost space
of shedding an old identity.

I disappear.
I don’t know how long I’m gone.

Your hands rework my being
like the first time God blew
the breath of life onto formless clay.

After a rupture in consciousness
I wake up to unfamiliar sensations.
My body feels new and strange.

I am disoriented in the darkness.
I feel an instinctive urge to push
against the boundaries
of this tight container.

I press tentatively,
then with increasing
strength and urgency.

Daylight startles me
as the veil opens.

With further struggle
I finally wriggle out.

The air feels fresh on my body.
I shiver in the crisp breeze.

I sense dimly that I existed before
but I don’t really remember.

I let the sunlight warm my wings
When they dry, I fly off.

~ Cate

(Cate Laurier can be contacted at


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