The Thing

Quite in a daze, zombied from an awful day at the office, and minding that the sidewalk was as dry as chalk I nearly screamed, not because I have no amiability for what I am about to discuss, moreover due to the fact that a thing was nearly squished under my feet.  I say ‘thing’ as I haven’t seen this this thing since I was probably six years old.

They were always nearly a kaleidoscope of dark purple through to brown and then a sickly cream endpoint where I imagined its slimy little head to be.  I always thought their toxic vomit colour stemmed from the digested soil they wriggled through all day everyday (how funny if humans turned the colour of the food we ate, this would certainly eradicate racism: I digress).

The scene was like an extract from Slugs by Shaun Hutson, a horrid novel that scared me half to death in my teens, except of course it wasn’t a cannibal type slug, it was a worm.  When was the last time any adult even ever saw a worm, they are only reserved for the eyes of children.  Then to see a worm in the middle of a town centre, on a dry day.  Don’t they only come to surface in the pouring rain to volunteer in the genocide of its wormy race with thousands of wormy corpses strewn across the pavement with their mutilated bodies squashed in two or three or four pieces as you try to avoid stepping on the still plump parts.

I could hardly believe I was seeing a worm, it was like a moving apparition.  I say ‘moving’ as I have no fitting word for the activity a worm undertakes.  It certainly wasn’t wriggling across the paving, it wasn’t slithering, it wasn’t crawling (it has no legs!), it wasn’t shuffling, what on earth – how do worms move and what is their movement called?!  Do they just worm themselves around?!  Taken aback at the lone stringy fully creamy coloured worm worming its way infront of me, I only had one word: Eurgh!  And I continued on my way home.

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