The death of a camellia
She was beautiful, sure. But she had a nasty little secret. So I had to kill her.
I even felt a little guilty as the saw tore through the big pieces, and then again as I hacked up the big pieces into smaller, more dumpable pieces.
Revenge has been served.
As the few red flowers were crushed under the weight of the toppling bush, some petals scattering in the breeze, I wavered. Too late now, anyway. But there under the leaves, still, after many months, was the evidence of the havoc that she wreaked on us this autumn and last – tens of thousands of dead and extremely hairy caterpillars for whom the camellia had been such plentiful food and impenetrable haven.
But the hair of long dead caterpillars has much the same effect on humans as the hair of live, squirming caterpillars, it seems. This morning I look like I have chickenpox. Or the last stages of a terminal hard drug habit. And I see the world through bright red eyes.
Form an orderly queue, ladies.