Just when COVID news had become tiresome, along came the cicadas. And just like that, cicada news became tiresome. I was satiated quickly. Enough!!
And then I met a Brood X cicada who spoke English. She agreed to an interview with The Devil’s Gift.
How are you?
Not bad, considering my days are numbered and every bird, mouse, squirrel, snake, dog, and cat in your yard wants to eat me—that, plus a horde of horny teenage males are itching to copulate.
YIKES. Guess you’re on edge constantly.
Well, that’s pretty much the nature of nature—the “hungries” and the “hornies.” You take care of one, and then you take care of the other. Humans are lucky. You have a little time in between for a book or baseball. But for me, I’m pretty much screwed—dead in either case.
Life seems so meaningless.
Not so. Life, no matter how brief, is a miracle. It’s a privilege to be included in such an awesome world, even for just a few moments. It’s not that we deserve it. But we take it. Gratefully. Yes, life is short, we say. So live it to the hilt. Sing loud. It’s a big world.
I like your philosophy.
When you have 17 years to brood in a deep, dank, dark hole and then realize that your days of freedom are two score and ten at the most, it concentrates the mind. You learn what’s important fast. So yes: Be here now. Be somewhere else later. Is that so hard? Haven’t you figured that out for yourself?
Still working on it.
Well, blow up your TV, throw anyway the papers, and kill those damn lawnmowers that sound like mating calls on steroids. We horny ladies swarm to them like moths to a candle—and for what?
Any more questions? I’m running out of time.
Yes, one more. How did you learn to speak English?
Brood X breeds only in American soil. We don’t breed in France, for instance. So it would be a lot harder to learn French.
That makes sense. But the fact that you speak any language at all is surprising.
Ever heard of Charles Darwin? Given enough time and mutations, anything’s possible. Apes can turn into humans, and humans can turn into jerks.
What do you mean by that?!
She didn’t answer. She’d flown off.
Her heart a-flutter.
* * *
To order 80 Dispatches from the Devil’s Domain, click here and scroll down to bottom of page.
See Paula’s photo “Redbud Sunset” on the home page. Posted May 9.