2011 -- 3.2 (Spring) Poetry

What Will I Kill Today? (The Ethics of Home and Lawn Care)

by Woody McCree

The armadillos are coming every night now,

Ripping apart my pristine green lawn

With their grub-searching snouts and claws.


There are ants on my kitchen counter;

Yes, I understand that I practically invited them in,

Cooking for three nights in a row

Without wiping down the surface.


I understand that I am the one who sliced the cantaloupe,

Allowing the juice to drip down,

Forming pale orange puddles on the gray Formica.

I concede it is my fault the ants are here;

Nevertheless, they are here.


The squirrels keep reaching around to my well-hung birdfeeders,

Stretching their flexible torsos

To steal the abundant seed.

The sunflower seed and suet are for the cardinals,

The warblers, and the tufted-titmice

Not the acrobatic rats with fluffy tails.


Floppy green elephant ears keep sprouting up

Through the inches of well-manicured mulch,

Layered impeccably to prevent all weeds from taking root.


This array of choices dizzies me.

I have no choice;

There is only one choice:

Kill them!

Kill them ALL!