Exoskeleton – Līgo Haibun Challenge

I have really enjoyed the past two weeks of writing a haibun – a piece of prose followed by a haiku poem. The Līgo Haibun Challenge is hosted by Penny, Ye Pirate and Nightlake – why not take a trip to their blogs to find out more and check the InLinkz linky to read other offerings?

This week’s two alternative prompts are the quotes below:

“Not only the thirsty seek the water,

the water as well seeks the thirsty.”



“If your heart is a volcano,

how shall you expect flowers to bloom?”

Khalil Gilbran

I have chosen Khalil Gilbran as my inspiration this week. Let me know what you think!


– Exoskeleton –

My heart is a desert. I have dragged and hauled my body through the past days and months, every cell and sinew focused on survival, on existence, on staying alive.

My first thoughts on waking turn to food; where to find it, is it safe, how will I cook it, will it keep the hunger pangs at bay?

Next; staying away from dark alleys, empty buildings, yawning mouths of doorways, shattered windows. Shadows threaten. Instincts rule where logic has abandoned us.

Finally; a roof for the night. Crowds hide the worst of all predators, sheltering under tents of sweat-stained blankets tide-marked with mud. I have learned to be solitary. I need nothing except my wits.

Muscles atrophy through lack of use. Our jaws have slackened as chatter recedes. Talking is superfluous. Walking is necessary.

My heart is deserted, shrunken by turbulence, assailed by violence, scarred with misuse. Have I lost you?

carapace keeps safe

but hides my starving heart from

love, for which it yearns


10 thoughts on “Exoskeleton – Līgo Haibun Challenge

  1. Hi Freya, is ‘us’ correct in ‘abandoned us’. Should it be ‘me’?
    Very powerful and yet sad in the plight of the persona.

    1. Thank you. I have flipped back and forth from first person to the collective in this piece, since it isn’t just the narrator who has been abandoned by logic, who has stopped talking etc. Experimentation, in all its messy prose revealed right here!

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