Saturday, July 21, 2012

Wee, sleekit, cowrin, tim'rous beastie

In my long career on the road I've encountered lots of beasties. I've frightened a flock of wild turkeys, I've come upon more than my share of rattlesnakes (my share = none), I've been buzzed bombed by a hawk, I've been chased by mockingbirds, and I've of course had dealings with dogs without number. But yesterday was a first.

I was cruising along at my usual speed (.0000001 mph) when I saw a young cat, maybe about three-fourths grown, stalking something in the grass. The cat saw me, too, and it didn't like what it saw. (Not that I blame it.) It crouched back down and went into stalking mode again, but it kept glancing my way. Finally it decided that whatever it was stalking wasn't worth meeting me for, and it took off for parts unknown. I kept going, and when I got to the spot where the cat had been looking, a mouse popped out of the grass.

It looked just like a Disney mouse, chubby and happy (no wonder), and it scampered along the street beside me for a couple of steps. Then it veered off and slipped through the grate of a storm drain.

I went on home, and when I arrived, I saw an earthworm squirming on the pavement of my driveway, just about to cook in the sunshine. I picked it up and put it in the grass by the driveway, where it immediately started boring into the rain-softened ground. Two minuscule lives that will go on a little longer.

In Aurora, Colorado, a crazy man had killed twelve people only hours earlier. He'd wounded dozens more and left hundreds with psychic scars. It doesn't balance, does it? It doesn't come within a million miles. I guess you just do what you can.

1 comment:

Todd Mason said...

And you eat a salad afterward. With luck, one with no pesticide residues.

And spare a thought for, among the many, that woman who'd barely missed being present at another mass-shooting, in Canada, not long before, only to be killed in Aurora. Something was hunting her.

And note that Michael Bishop's new retrospective collection is titled THE DOOR GUNNER. One way to cope with that kind of hard, cold fact.