A Prayer for Roadkill

The Tragic Beauty of an Ugly End

A Prayer for Roadkill

How does it feel to go out with a bang?

Cheap shot.

But the point remains; you left the world in a blaze of lights blinking to a soundtrack of horns and tires scraping gravel.

For that second you froze, captured by the mix of beauty and horror, that primal wordless jolt.

How did it feel?

To be taken from here with rough, calloused, hands, a sudden black, an unknown knowing that your number was up-specifically, good old route such and such that you just had to get across.

Take solace. For one second, your death was someone’s main event.

Did you hear their yells, the cursing behind the wheel?

Did they even emerge from beyond their all powerful dashboard to examine the damage? As if there was something they could do. Perhaps they gave you a moment before driving on.


And why a family trip to the cottage has to stop for a moment, for some frazzled coupling to explain to a smaller one what it means to forever sleep.

Vermin in life, roadside idol in death-quickly they drive on, and you cease to exist in their worlds.

There are no candles for your greasy, matted fur, no band to lend some ceremony to your glassy eyes.

And now, there shall be no silence in your new sleep.

For what could be silent about the glistening pink that is you, strewn across the freeway, massaged back into the earth with each new wheel? The cries of revulsion you elicit from the unholy never cease.

Your tragedy is offensive to the modern world, yet in this offence is your power.

Your corpse shouts “I am seen. I matter.”

In an age where nothing seems to touch us, you remind us how we touch you in our ever so urban sprawl.

So rejoice in your so called ugly.

We see you. There are inductees into your church, those that will silently close their eyes in wordless hymns, lay flowers you will not see.

We declare you a guardian spirit of this tar laden strip. Count the cars, whisper consolation to us who every day must also scrape our insides off the pavement.

In your death, you refuse to hide.

I am seen. I matter.


nature poetry
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