Killer

At 6:30 a.m. the sun is already bright. It is Saturday. I am trying to stay in bed a little longer, but have been awake off and on all night. A tiny bug, most likely an itsy-bitsy spider, navigated the terrain of my right shoulder and clavicle, exploratory, non-threatening, as though it had accidentally gone off-road from the main highway and discovered this vast wilderness with trail systems going everywhere. His light wanderings kept me awake and began to drive me a little crazy. I reached around with my left hand to brush him off and instantly realized I had killed the tiny being. Now, I was totally awake. I know some spiders bite. I have been bitten, once between my toes, a toxic sting that left me dragging my numbed foot two hours before a dinner party. But I admire spiders. They are clever artisans, hunters, and sometimes quite beautiful. My lucky shot photos of the Golden Orb Weaver and the Southern Black Widow, for example, are examples of gorgeous creatures.

We humans kill all sorts of other beings casually as we go about our business. Sometimes we know we did it. Sometimes we don’t. But I regret the inadvertent death of that minute being in the dark of the night.

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