Puss moths, in one incarnation,
feed from goat willow,
are mothered by it, as if
they recognise one another.
And each instar brings its own struggle
to change; the pain of emergence
and transformation - how we shed and
redefine the borders of ourselves too.
Once poisonous children
are still shielded by aspens
who shake their branches
in conversation with the dead.
Little underworlds of wonder,
little worlds of undergoing -
what rites and passages
these moon-felted creatures,
leaf-crowned, endure to be
reborn from their coffined winters until
they soften into a new paper
and ink of feathers and ermine.
Image from pixabay. Also images on Twitter if you are remotely interested are:
https://commons.m.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Vincent_van_Gogh_-_Emperor_moth_-_Google_Art_Project.jpg Not the moth of the poem, but still, I liked it, and that is what counts...
And also, I think in its second to last instar, when it is at its most outrageous:https://commons.m.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Puss_Moth_Cerura_vinula_-_Flickr_-_gailhampshire.jpg