Suffering, Love

Lucas A. Davidson
3 min readMay 19, 2023

Daily Meditation 448–5/19/2023

looking out my wide bay window, the birds — doves, chickadees, finches, jays and more — all hop and bob and scratch for seeds as they weave between some half-dozen of my beloved squirrels.

“Taily Po, Whitey, Tippy…” I mumble a few of their names with a large smile and bright eyes as I survey my yard, bursting with life and (presumably) happy critters.

Watching them come pouring in each morning as I go out whistling and shaking a tin bucket full of seeds is one of the best parts of the entire day. If nothing else goes well, then at least I’ve enjoyed my little family of creatures.

Standing, I go to the front door. Giving it a few knocks, I unlock and open it. Reaching for the “hidden bowl” in my living room, I grab a fistful of peanuts. Two squirrels — Taily Po and another without distiguishing features — are already wheedling about my front steps…they know exactly what the knocks mean!

Tossing them each a peanut in the shell, they quickly scurry off. The others observe, asking themselves “Wait, where do I get such a lovely treat?” moments before I scatter the rest of the nuts over the lawn for them to each get one.

After watching them all (and listening to the borderline ASMR of them cracking the shells and crunching in the trees), I head to my Keurig in the next room for a cup of coffee.

I add my splash of milk, give it a mix, and turn to head off to my office. Passing the window, I glance outside, again.

This time, however, I see one of my wonderful friends half flattened just on the road in front of my home. A thick spurt of blood, a crushed peanut, disemboweled innards, an the breeze wafting about the now lifeless, fluffy tail and I feel my eyes welling up with hot, stinging mist…

— — —

Fortunately, this hasn’t happened (recently) to my fabulous furry family and friends.

But, it certainly has happened a number of times in my years feeding and loving them.

“You should stop feeding them if seeing them die is so painful for you,” one may argue.
And perhaps they’re right.

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Lucas A. Davidson

Daily philosophical meditations on Eudaimonia. These are distillations from the forthcoming book on the topic. Comments or jobs: lucas@multistatewide.com