progeny of Colorado Beetle amongst eggplants are developing a worrying
characteristic. Perhaps it is an evolutionary trend and if so I must
hasten to develop my own behavioral adaptation.
the insects that dwell amongst the vegetables there are three main
reactions to an approaching thumb and index finger. Some squirrel
around the plant stem and disappear from view. These are usually
beady eyed and agile. Others fall like stones into the mass of the
plant and it is then necessary to thrash around in search of them.
Still others appear to become motionless and these simple minded
characters are easiest to hasten into the next world where probably they
become nuns or librarians.
The fat-backed and unhealthy
looking child of the Colorado Beetle has in my view always belonged to the
last of these categories. I picture their awakening as a moment of
purity amongst Saints or amongst the Tales of Beatrix Potter.
But in the eggplants to the South Eastern
Corner of the vegetable garden there is a new brood of fat-backed children
that have in them a sentience that results in that strategy of survival that
emulates a falling stone. My first response of thrashing around and
cursing is far from adequate. The fallen become invisible to my
eyes. I cannot see them against the soil.
Underneath the work bench I have a
collection of tempting bottles. This once might have been a final
solution. I picture the victims and shudder at the absoluteness of my
killing. Years and years of it. On it goes into the soil down to
where the earthworms live. And afterwards I can see corpses as though
there had been a holocaust, and bulldozers to bury them. It is an
awfulness out of which there can be no space for nuns or librarians.
And when I use these bottles, I am arrogant and I am God, and I am aware
that through these generations of slaughter the Colorado Beetle has gained a
tolerance to this carnival of killing that has so bonded the gardener to the
Tomorrow I must add reading glasses
to my armory and I must outwit those of the Colorado Beetle who have learned
to fall like stones. Otherwise and they deserve to one day rule the
world with a fist as iron as mine once might have been. But under the
circumstances of my failing this mission I will surrender by telling the
Colorado Beetle that if ever they do become the dominant species, I wish to
return as a salt water crocodile.