Jim Yerman


Dead Raccoon


I was walking in my back yard the other day a little after noon
When I spotted what I thought was a fox, but turned out to be a raccoon.

“That’s not a fox, it’s a raccoon”, Deborah said letting out a chuckle she couldn’t resist
In my defense I was a teacher for 39 years...not a zoologist.

“It’s possible he’s just resting. We don’t want to disturb his slumber.” I said.
“Jim”, Deborah insisted, “I’m pretty sure he’s dead.”

“Judging by the lividity, it’s a fate we can’t deny.
I realized at that point Deborah’s been watching too much CSI.

Upon further inspection Deborah was correct, a fact I must bemoan
As the dead raccoon in front of us was not yet fully grown.

His death appeared to come peacefully, he wasn’t bruised, or cut, or marred
It looked like he just fell asleep while laying in our yard.

We could only speculate as to the cause, did he fall, did he break a bone?
And we couldn’t help but be saddened that he died so far from home.

So we dug a grave in the corner of our yard with reverence and with care
We tenderly picked up his body and gently buried him there.

If you believe we are all connected as we contemplate the sun or wonder at the moon
Then any death disheartens us, even the death of a baby raccoon.

For all life should be precious, it’s something we should all pursue
How often in today’s world do we forget that this is true?

I’m glad I was reminded of this the other day a little after noon
When Deborah and I gave a moment of silence for the death of a raccoon.

Submitted: Saturday, January 04, 2014
Edited: Saturday, January 04, 2014
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