So I went out to get a book from the car, turning on the porchlight as I went.

I stepped onto the front porch and noted a stick on the porch.


It was a millipede, maybe three inches long, of a variety I hadn’t seen before.

I called James out. He looked at it, agreed it was very large, and went back inside.

I got my book, and on the way back up, narrowly avoided stepping on a slug the size of a friggin’ bratwurst the largest slug I’ve seen since I left Oregon, a handsomely spotted individual of sleek sluggy lines, just the sort you want as a totem animal if you’re into that sort of thing. No organ-grinder slug, this! This was a slug with majesty.

I called James out. He looked at it, agreed it was very large, and tried to go back inside, whereupon another millipede, this time one of the giant yellow-legged ones the approximate girth and length of a cocktail weenie, pulled up along side the slug, possibly signalling a turn or enraged that the slug was doing 25 in a 45 zone, or something. I dunno.

We gazed at this for a moment, and then agreed that our porch was, verily, a home to giants in the earth. Then we both went inside, ‘cos Nature, in all it’s multifacted glory, can still be pretty disgusting at times.

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  • I write & illustrate books, garden, take photos, and blather about myriad things. I have very strong feelings about potatoes.

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