Fake snails


It sits thickly on the damp tile

Uniformly dark and brown and wet

All over

Its queer eyes frozen

In deliberate oozing contemplation

Of the next slurred step

On its patient journey to join

The other

co n t e m p l a t i n g

Snails on the wall




Then I step forward

And its shell falls apart

To reveal a curled crumpled hollow

Battered by the rain

And shriveled up into itself


A wrinkled illusion of a snail's

Plateaus and protrusions


A slimy… disappointment?


--- Oh helpless unknowing wannabe! ---


And – well, oops!

As I wonder if I should feel


At having thought of a fallen leaf

As a snail.