death of a squirrel

I first noticed the squirrel when I heard a magpie squawking. I followed her gaze round a parked car and saw a squirrel in the road.

He was gasping for breath and leaking blood. 2 cars went over but moved to avoid him. Sam had joined me by then and we both went over. I felt I needed to kill him, so I put my heel over his head and started pressing down. He writhed as he felt my shoe, and in that split second I realised I was going far too slowly. I pushed down fast and killed him. Then I swept him into the gutter with my shoe. Sam picked him up and dropped him over the fence into the communal park.

Writing this now is bringing back that shaking feeling. Immediately afterwards I felt really shaky and needed to spend some time meditating. I felt instinctively the need to end his suffering, but also felt that it was a terrible thing to do.

That evening we went back and made a little ceremony and buried him with some bits of fruits and nuts. We played him a song and I thought of Hafiz poems. I felt bad about kicking him out of the road. I’m glad Sam was there to give him some more respect.

My feelings about this are tied up with my belief that life is precious, that I respect life and death, and that because I respect life I don’t want to end it.

Killing the squirrel was not easy. My feelings validate my ideas about veganism in a vivid way. I don’t want to kill animals unnecessarily.

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