I see ghosts. Of course I do, because I’m a Vampire.
That said, I have never seen the ghost of a wild animal or at least that of a wild creature who met death in my yard.
Yesterday my lovely delicate little light as air calico cat grabbed a squirrel by the neck, almost decapitated it, then ate out the heart, lungs, liver, and whatever else was above the intestines.
I found the bloodied squirrel spread eagle, gutted, with tiny white ribs exposed to the sunlight. Not a drop of blood was on the cat.
I only mention this because whenever I have found a dead animal in my yard I feel unease. I don’t know what to do with them so I put them in the garbage can. Then every single time I have to go out to the garbage can in the side yard I know a body is in the bottom of it.
The largest animal was a huge male turkey who was dead on the ground underneath a broken tree branch in my front yard. A female turkey walked around him feeding on whatever she could find in my flower beds. Think of the largest Thanksgiving turkey and add about ten pounds to it. That was the dead turkey in my yard.
It died on garbage day. For a week two turkey feet stuck up almost to the top of the garbage can, a reminder to me every time I took something out to the trash that life is a frail thing indeed.
Another time I found a beautiful dead little squirrel in my front yard, still warm from a fall. I scooped it up and wrapped it carefully in a bag and put it in the garbage can.
Birds, snakes, squirrels, and turkeys all go in the can. My house is built upon rocks so digging is out of the question. And if I did bury an animal in my yard by the next morning another animal would have dug it up, no matter how many rocks I put over the hole.
Anyway, there is something uneasy about having the body of an animal, not food, but just an animal who visited my home come to a violent death and end up spending a week with me (or until the next garbage day.)
I do not see their ghosts. I do not hear tiny animal banshee voices in the wind. All that is left is fur and feathers.
This is an unreasonable discomfort of mine, but anyway… it is what it is.
You’d think as a Vampire I wouldn’t care, but finding a tiny warm squirrel in my yard, with no life in it’s tiny body is just so sad. A rat, not sad at all. A turkey – not that is just weird because they are so darned big. With smaller birds all that I ever find left are feathers and maybe a random foot. You can ask my cat about that. Luckily it has been years since I’ve had to deal with dead possums or skunks. I don’t know what I’d do if I found a coyote, a raccoon, or heaven forbid a bobcat or a mountain lion dead in my yard.
Garbage day won’t come soon enough. It is Friday and death is in my garbage can.
~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman