Snail’s Progress – Peter Francis

(for a likely pair of pilgrims)

Sweeping with poised antenna left and right
A snail crawls across the red tarpaulin.
He does not know he makes himself a target.
Touch and smell, the senses of the skin
Are more to him then colour is, or light.
His minute eyes no larger than a pin
He cannot know how soon a bird in flight
Might trap his succulence and take him in.

He’s never changed not since that primal birth.
Still walks on his stomach and on his back
Carries a house, his  refuge and a burden.
He will survive when we’ve all quit the earth
To bundle on lime walls and leave a track
Of slime that shines like silver in the sun.

I watch him with my God like stare
And think we make a likely pair.


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