Wallowing in Our Ancestral Swamp

Ancestral Swamp - Matthew Batty
Ancestral Swamp by Matthew Batty

By Elizabeth Doolittle

Wallowing, basking, reveling!
Covered in the heavy mud of millennia
Sharp teeth and rough scales filled with time
Ancient fossils and forlorn relics
Of our common ancestral swamp.

Origin of all human savagery and primal urge
Epicenter of endless speculation and obsession
Understanding the supposed origin of man:
Neurotically wallowing in our muddy ancestral swamp.

Pit of compulsion, trap of men
Can you not see beyond this abysmal hole?
Roadblock of progress, inhibitor of innovation
Simply a stumbling block in a grander narrative –
It is only by turning the eye ahead
That we can escape the throes of
Our hypnotic ancestral swamp.


Elizabeth Doolittle is a senior Secondary English Education and English dual major and Art History minor at Flagler College. Elizabeth has worked in the Flagler College Department of English for two years, the Flagler College Bookstore for one year, the Other Words literature conference for two years, the Florida Heritage Book Festival for one year, and has interned with International Film Festivals, Sigma Tau Delta regional conferences, and at various middle and high schools in the St. Augustine area. Elizabeth has presented scholarly papers at various conferences across the country; she hopes to attend the University of Colorado at Boulder for graduate school and teach in Colorado.