Potcake Poet’s Choice: Gail White, ‘Snails’

This morning, at my garbage can,
just underneath the lid,
two snails in the embrace of love
connubially hid.

Who knows what dangers they had passed,
how high they had to climb,
in order to achieve at last
this interchange of slime?

I left you unmolested, snails,
beneath your plastic shelf,
because on Friday nights I look
ridiculous myself.

Gail White writes: “This is a favorite light verse of mine, first published in Light. Our sexual nature gives us something in common with even the lowliest life forms, a fact which caused me to spare the snails from eviction.”

Gail White is the resident poet and cat lady of Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. Her books ASPERITY STREET and CATECHISM are available on Amazon. She is a contributing editor to Light Poetry Magazine (lightpoetrymagazine.com). “Tourist in India” won the Howard Nemerov Sonnet Award for 2013. Her poems have appeared in the Potcake Chapbooks ‘Tourists and Cannibals’, ‘Rogues and Roses’, ‘Families and Other Fiascoes’ and ‘Strip Down’.
https://www.amazon.com/Asperity-Street-Gail-White/dp/1927409543

“snails mating” by tonrulkens is licensed under Openverse from WordPress.org

6 thoughts on “Potcake Poet’s Choice: Gail White, ‘Snails’

  1. addacat

    PS: Robin, I can’t seem to figure out how to link this to my Facebook page. Can you help me with that? Thanks! Gail

    > WordPress.com

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  2. Michael Burch

    A fine poem by one of our better contemporary poets. I have one poem about snails …

    we did not Dye in vain!
    by michael r. burch

    from “songs of the sea snails”

    though i’m just a slimy crawler,
    my lineage is proud:
    my forebears gave their lives
    (oh, let the trumps blare loud!)
    so purple-mantled Royals
    might stand out in a crowd.

    i salute you, fellow loyals,
    who labor without scruple
    as your incomes fall
    while deficits quadruple
    to swaddle unjust Lords
    in bright imperial purple!

    Originally published by The American Dissident

    Notes: In ancient times the purple dye produced from the secretions of purpura mollusks (sea snails) was known as “Tyrian purple,” “royal purple” and “imperial purple.” It was greatly prized in antiquity, and was very expensive according to the historian Theopompus: “Purple for dyes fetched its weight in silver at Colophon.” Thus, purple-dyed fabrics became status symbols, and laws often prevented commoners from possessing them. The production of Tyrian purple was tightly controlled in Byzantium, where the imperial court restricted its use to the coloring of imperial silks. A child born to the reigning emperor was literally porphyrogenitos (“born to the purple”) because the imperial birthing apartment was walled in porphyry, a purple-hued rock, and draped with purple silks. Royal babies were swaddled in purple; we know this because the iconodules, who disagreed with the emperor Constantine about the veneration of images, accused him of defecating on his imperial purple swaddling clothes!

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