Monday, July 15, 2013

A Dehydrated Caterpillar Takes 8 Months to Become a Dehydrated Moth

My conscious is clear.  I am finally going to be able to sleep at night without dreaming about cops breaking down my door because they have discovered the body.

I am not a murderer.

Sort of.

Maybe I'm a fraction of a murderer.  Like saying that you are 1/4th Cherokee.  ...It's fine if you are 1/4th Cherokee, in fact, it's a much more brilliant world if you are.  The 1/4 murderer is much less cool.  I'm probably only 1/16th murderer though.  And that's why I can be relatively sure that I'm not going to be prosecuted.

The accusation?  That I dehydrated a caterpillar.

If you remember, that is where all this began.  A caterpillar disturbed my slumber, so I nabbed him and put him in a container.  Shortly thereafter, he spun a cocoon.  Then winter hit, and we began the slow process of sucking all of the water out of our house by way of a wood fired stove.  It's how we heat our little house, and give the neighborhood cancer.... but that's from another story.  One murder rap at a time.

So this little cocoon began looking emaciated. The heat was wonderful, but it dries everything out.  I kept checking on the cocoon.  Refusing to throw it away and accept that I killed this little metamorphic being, I let it stay on my mantel.  I even added water to the container, thinking it might act like one of those kid experiments that has a rubber dinosaur in an egg.  If you put the egg in water, the dino expands and breaks free of the egg.  It comes alive! ...dehydrated caterpillars don't do that.

So the months slipped away.  Winter became spring, spring became summer.  The cocoon had just become a part of the family.

Then today I spied this in the container.  
(the moth, not my son's hand)

I valiantly protected this little creature.  I kept him safe from the cruel winter and wet spring.  

Unfortunately for moths, they are very quiet.

If he had buzzed, peeped, popped, scratched... anything, I would have found him.  He would still be alive.
Instead, he quietly zipped out of the cocoon, and slowly withered away to a crunchy grey rice crispy with wings.

It may have been suicide.  Actually, yes.  Suicide.  I'm sure of it.

I am not at fault.

1 comment:

  1. This is exactly something I would do! And I vote suicide as well - You did such a good job caring for him, protecting him, and keeping him warm, he didn't want to leave....ever.