Cicada Song, or Ballad of the Grasshopper Crusher

It’s been one of those summers that I will remember by all five (six, seven?) senses. Sound being a big one at the moment. Not just in the songs that I post, or those that run through my head, but also the animalistic sounds. Human squeaks and squeals to be sure, but above all the cicadas. If you aren’t familiar with our noisy friends, here is a picture of one of the Midwest varieties:

They rattle and buzz like nobody’s business! Here is the sound of just one. Imagine the cacophony of thousands!:

These little buggers have been with me night and day for weeks, months, marking evolution with their sound and the way they moult their shells. Calling their mating song out to me like sirens. Yes, the cicadas have been boisterous this year. I am one with the cicada song.

I’m glad for that beautiful side, because otherwise I’m a mere grasshopper crusher. I say this because I killed scores of them yesterday on my bike ride. They lounged around on the shoulder of US-231 south of Lafayette in the thousands. Most of them bounded away from my oncoming tires. A few did not. I took no joy in this. Just the opposite. We as humans sometimes plod around in our joy, crushing those beneath us. But maybe this small realization, this realization that I am also a grasshopper crusher, will awaken me to another part of life that I’m ignoring. I’m not sure.

Here’s another cicada jam for all of those interested:

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