by Sajita, 17
Folsom, California



Teetering on the edge of survival

and extinction;

The horizon is bleak and clouded

for the shells that used to protect

my soft abdomen are weak and


The edge of Tartarus is far too near

Sinking past the aphotic zone,

I am pulled in by lightlessness

glowing and growing like algae bloom.

It calls my name.

It. calls. my. name.  

and I float down

with jelly-like plastic bags

and mollusk-like baseball caps.

A fake shell, perhaps.


Hermits live in secondary-homes.

They live alone,

becoming one with nature

so as to find their soul.

Soft is their underbelly

for they were not born warriors,

with armor tough as steel.

No, they were born scavengers.

Picking up the fallen sins of mankind,

recycling them into blessings,

fighting the tide of in-humanity.

I am small and for now

I reside in the decadent halls

of a plastic shhhh- hell

resting in the benthic layer.

The darkness, growing from sins left to fester,

consumes the 1% lightness

And us Hermit Crabs,

the last hope for human-kind,

oh, when we die

oh, when you leave us to die,

we will drag you down,                                                                     

to the abysm that is Tartarus

and down there

you and I

are not so different as we seem.



Written in Response to "Manatee/Humanity" by Anne Waldman