Saturday, February 25, 2012

Unexpected Poetry - The Value of an Ant's Life

A mosquito landed on my arm,
and I did what I had always done.
I raised a hand and struck it down
without blinking.
I shook its crippled, lifeless form off my arm
and let it fall to the ground
without a second glance.
All of a sudden, it occured to me
to think about what I had just commited.

We are humans, the peak of evolution
and the apex predator of every food chain.
They are mosquitoes, which reproduce by hundreds
and leech the blood of others to stay alive.
And yet, small and insignificant as they are,
do they not have life of their own?
Do they not have a level of conciousness
where pain and suffering exists?

What is the value of an ant's life?
That tiny speck with six legs
which carries food to its nest.
Why do we end its life
when we see it walk across a table?
It is bringing food to its queen
for the benefit of the clonoy.
Are they not unakin
to our own brave soldiers?

The flies we see in our kitchen
are only trying to survive.
They have life, and they love it
and wish to sustain it with food.
How unfortunate, then, for the fly
who perishes by the swatter!
Its life ended so abruptly
in the cycle of life.
As its conciousness fades,
it drops to the ground and dies.
Meanwhile, the giant with the swatter
sweeps it awat, with no remorse.

Therefore, little mosquito, flitting about my room,
please forgive me for the demise of your brother.
Iwas young and foolish,
and did not appreciate life.
However, I'm afraid you must now leave,
for with you in my face, I will get no sleep.
But perhaps some other time,
I will willingly let you feed off me,
for I'm sure you only appreciate life
as I have learned to value it.


I was really sleepy when I wrote this poem, so don't take it seriously. Just the ramblings of a dozey teenager. However, even in my stupor I think I struck home at a few points. How often have you squished an ant with your pencil while doing your homework just because it walked in front of you and you needed a distraction, and felt good about it? My point exactly. These things are alive too. As nature goes, living things should only kill other living things for 1. food, 2. self-defense, and 3. mating rights. Of course, only the first two should ever apply to humans. Then why would you kill a harmless ant walking across your desk? Think about it.

I wrote this about a week before Valentine's - I was feeling strangely creative at the time - and I wondered whether or not I should have written a love poem. However, I decided not, for two reasons: a. No girlfriend, i.e. no one to write it to, i.e. no inspiration. b. The newspapers were publishing stories on the latest Valentine's controversies, like how Valentine's is supposed to be immoral, but others disagree, and they have all their debates and opinions, and lets say it really put me off.

I have only killed one mosquito since writing the poem. I have also noticed an increase in mosquitoes, and subsequently spiders, around and about the house. But that's okay because the population of tiny home lizards has increased as well, to balance things out. I even found one in my bathroom. As you can see, nature takes its course fine when humans don't intervene. I just hope none of them defecate on me in my sleep.

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