Cruel to bugs

I quite like bugs—
at least I think I do.
And I don’t mean the Bunny
(though he’s all right as well),
I mean the beetles, ants, spiders,
flies, centipedes, roaches…

I only intentionally swat
the biters: the mosquitoes,
the horseflies, the gnats.
I go out of my way
to remove the others
from the house humanely
in a cup, rather than smooshed
to a rolled-up newspaper.

So maybe someday I’ll understand
why I never see the little beetle in the sink
until I’ve already turned on the water;
or the fly perched on the urinal cake
until I’ve already washed it down the drain;
or the fragile snail on the sidewalk
until I hear its crunch and find my foot in a
slimy mess.

Perhaps I do see them
but my primal instinct to kill
outweighs my instinct to protect
before I have time to intervene
leaving me feeling horrible

but not as horrible
as the crushed


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