oh well


Today, on my ride home from a busy and uneventful day at the shop, I watched a Canadian goose die in the street.  I was stuck at a light and then, there it was, waddling, in obvious and severe distress, into the street ahead of me.  Its dozen of cohorts were on the sidewalk behind it and peering at it in its struggle.

Feathers were everywhere, something was very clearly wrong with it, maybe it had been hit, maybe not, and I was going just fast enough and there was just enough time to edge well around it.  My heart pounded as I confusedly watched it in agony.  What would I even do if I had tried to stop to help it?  I’d be petrified to touch it.  In the distance, there was a crowd of construction workers finishing up for the day and completely ignoring the suffering creature.  There was nothing to do.  In a matter of seconds, I looked in my rearview mirror and it had totally collapsed in a heap.  Its fellow geese beginning to trot into the street to swarm and investigate, to mourn the way geese mourn.

How much of the suffering in the world do we pass by, utterly helpless and impotent to stop or even ameliorate?  Maybe I’m not meant to make the full comparison, but I do.  I can still feel its final moments rattling around in my head.

At any rate, right now, I’ve got a terrible headache the aspirin is not moving quickly on fixing and even the very idea of a hundred more words is making me seethe.   Tomorrow, though, I have a totally unrestricted day and I am planning to just enjoy it.  Go hang with my mom, buoy both our spirits.  Give her the playlist URL.  Then come back with a candle and an altar and a gift to the Goodwill gods with all of my old clothes heading out the door.  Let them be of use on someone else’s body, someone else’s soul.  I have enough to drag around this life.

Cold water, music.

The things I would do for a neck massage.  The terrible, cruel, wonderful things I would do.  Time to be still for a moment.

+138 words written elsewheres.


3 thoughts on “oh well”

  1. Wow. Your post reminds me of the time when I saw a squirrel who must have gotten run over by a car, and its back legs were totally broken and bloody as it was dragging itself across the freeway. This was years ago and I remember it to this day. The world is a cruel place and, just like you, I have compassion for these animals suffering, and even people suffering. I think I have too much compassion for my own good.

  2. It’s a seriously sad and helpless feeling to watch anyone in pain when you cannot change it or improve it. I think compassion is a deeply important thing, but we have to be fair to ourselves when it is not safe to insert ourselves in a situation to make a difference. In the moment, though, so awful!

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