Over the years, while travelling the country roads and back roads of southwest Georgia, I’ve often taken notice of the frequency of dead animals along the side of the road. These unfortunate animals are what are commonly known “down south” as “roadkill”. The meaning of the term is fairly evident; it describes both the current state of the dead animal’s carcass and the method by which it arrived at this state; killed by the side of the road. I wrote a poem about it. You want to hear it? Here it goes.
The roadkill lies by the side of the road;
lifeless and bloated, hardly recognizable.
In the middle of summer, under the summer sun.
Was it an armadillo; a rabbit; a squirrel or an Opossum?
In its present state one would hardly know.
But, that hardly matters to the shiny black crow.
The bald-headed buzzard circles, they couldn’t care less;
these ominous portents of death; connoisseurs of flesh.
But the butterflies who flutter about with gossamer wings,
What are they doing here among these dead things?
They flutter, they land, then again take flight;
feasting on this sickly sweet delight.
Preternatural it would seem.
Preternatural it only SEEMS!
What a sad state of affairs exists in this world, but maybe there’s some consolation in the story of Samson and the Lion, in which Samson had his own experience with some “roadkill”. It seems that Samson was on his way to a city called Timnah to see this pretty girl he’d had his eye on. On the way there he was attacked by a lion which he dispatched post-hastely and left the “roadkill” by the side of the road.
Sometime later, on his way back to Timnah to marry his beloved, he decided out of curiosity that he’d venture down the road where he’d left the “roadkill”. When he came upon the “roadkill” he found that some honeybees had built a hive in the carcass and as a result, the carcass full of honey. Reaching into the carcass of the “roadkill”, Samson scooped up a handful of honey and ate it. Then he continued his trip to Timnah.
Once in Timnah he decided he’d have some fun with some of the boys at the wedding feast. Using his two encounters with the lion, he composed and presented to the boys this riddle; “Out of the eater, something to eat; out of the strong, something sweet”. The groomsmen eventually correctly answered Samson’s riddle, although their method of coming to this correct answer, was not of the most honorable ilk, for Samson’s Philistine wife, had given them the answer.
A few of lessons can be gleaned from Samson’s story:
1.Samson was a bad dude.
2.Good things can come from bad situations.
3.Never tell secrets to a Philistine woman.