“The Garden” – Part I

Associated Trellis – Your Yard & Garden News Agency  

Today’s Headlines!

B52 Dragonfly Crashes in NM Desert 

Raindrops Flood the South Heal Print

Three Injured in Hive Collapse 

Migratory Birds Return – Nesting Prices Soar 

Sports – Beetles Grab Coveted Butter-Cup

Cockroach Trial Enters Closing Arguments

The Ants convey the Royal Exalted One on a pheasant-feathered palanquin supported by bronze-colored poles. Millions of garden-crawlers have gathered for the court proceedings, buzzing and clicking.

They are such show-offs, the Ants – just because they can carry so much. Big deal. They all teek-teek on eensy feet about the dais, acting important. They are so boring to look at. All black like Goths. They make me sick with their arrogance. But I am an Under-Moth – a staff-reporter bug – and I must deal with it. 

The Lady-Bugs-in-Waiting come next, they flutter behind in case some bug makes a misstep or loses a leg. The Exalted One sits upon her dais – a stage festooned with ridiculous paintings of the constellations. Her platform rises in the middle of fur-coated Caterpillars. They make me sick, too – they are so show-offy, those fur coats in ridiculous colors. And it’s after Memorial Day, so they should not be wearing their fur coats at all.

Some Stink Bug belches in the back. Crickets entertain us, their back legs and wings strumming. Pine cones are fired up by the Lightening Bugs and flare against faces of the spectators. Chandeliers of Spiders’ webs reflect the pine cones and the Lightning Bugs’ derrieres. For a moment, I am mesmerized by the glow; my nature begs me to flit toward the light. I wrestle with my feelings; I stay still. 

The Spiders trundle their saddlebags across the cobblestones and picnic on wrapped-up corpses. Above, the surrounding scaffolding groans with the weight of millions of Gnats. As if this was a picnic, thousands of the Gnats play and watch a light-spirited chess game; each contingent moves a piece along the squares on the chessboard. Underworld side bets are taking place, nesting items being exchanged like trading cards. Kennels of ticks, they bark and bang against the wire with boundless energy. 

The Exalted Mantis surveys the assembly. Holy Mealworms! Is that a felt scrap fashioned into a Colonial tri-corner hat on the Mantis? On a triangular head? That fashion statement is rather redundant, don’t you think? Someone must talk to her costume attendant. I much prefer last winter’s Russian ushanka to this ridiculous frippery. 

The Mantis raises her fore-most legs.

Outside, royal attendants stop the weathercock with an excruciating squeal, its tail reflecting the dying rays of a setting sun. All activity stops in anticipation of the proceedings. 

Amorous eight-legged spinners stop and suspend webs, sixteen legs in a final upheaval, stricken in mid-weave. 

The Mantis bangs the gavel – the trial begins. 

Snails monitor the activity very slowly, shells polished like constabulary badges. Outside, a Lady-Bug-in-Waiting is snared on the thorn of a tea rose! Several officers slursh over to the disturbance, silver slime and shiny shells march out to quiet the interruption.

Butterflies flit about flapping multi-colored wings of amethyst and cerulean and scarlet, pointing their antennae at those who are disruptive. The Hummingbird Brigade is overhead, creating breezes so that we can suffer the humidity of the day. 

Along the perimeter, floral clusters crane their stem-necks and point their open blooms to the action on the bandstand. Youthful stamens and pistils are straining and stretching; they vie for attention and are shushed! Their elders flare their petals – a final murmur and then a hush. 

The case continues: 

The Mantis raises an appendage and demands silence; she rotates her head and glares at the Snails. They tick their shells, one against the other, signaling for quiet. A hush. We all watch the stilled weathercock. We wait to see which way the Mantis will direct its swing to announce the  verdict. The verdict comes down.

There has been conspiracy among the Cockroaches! This cannot stand! This cannot be allowed! The multiple eyes of multiple nations are upon us! We set a precedent, and a decision is dealt upon the prehistoric little garbage-munchers. The Mantis points to the compost foothills. We banish them!

It is decided.

It will be written on cast-off parchment wings and fur pelts of ancestral Caterpillars. 


Filed under Personal Articles

4 responses to ““The Garden” – Part I

  1. Elizabeth at Heartspoken

    Ooooh, conspiracy run amok! I’ve never enjoyed anthropomorphism so much. Well done. Very clever. Where are the Pixar folks when you need them? I am easily seeing this as a marvelous animated movie.

    • karenrsanderson

      Harkens back to other movies I’ve seen, but this was actually inspired by my Mom and her love of her garden, the bugs, her birds, the backyard…more coming soon.

  2. paul billyk

    Had to use the dictionary (well..Google) for many terms.

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