For the dverse prompt. This was a hard one. I got stuck on Peelers and it took a while to send them back to barracks.


How do we make it like it was,

before the layered dim-dull years

of struggling at the edge of forbearance

stifled the joy?

Is there a tool you can buy

to peel them away,

the encrusted disappointments,

like careening barnacles

from an old hull?

Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

43 thoughts on “Barnacles”

  1. I have a soft spot for barnacles, so needy they cling to a boat’s bottom. I like the phrases ‘layered dim-dull years’ and ‘encrusted disappointments’, Jane. Although, I would have found a poem about Peel’s bobbies an interesting angle!

  2. “to peel them away,

    the encrusted disappointments”

    WOW great lines Jane
    Thanks for dropping by to read mine


  3. I didn’t get unstuck for this challenge, but when I read yours I knew I had to comment. It’s subtle … and brilliant…and it fits so many relationships gone awry. Bravo!

  4. I’d like to think there is such a device. Over time, the crust gets pretty thick. But experience, when need be (when it’s only crusting), should be penetrable. As you say, like barnacles.

    1. They might not be any good for the streamlining, but they’re a source of life and a sign of age, experience also. I know that would be enough to have some people reaching for the scalpel but live and let live, I say.

  5. I like everything about this poem…the metaphor, the imagery, the question to ponder and especially this auditory delight…”before the layered dim-dull years”.

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