So, while whipping up a 2am cheesecake, I watched the death of a mosquito. Why are you talking about this? you wonder, but it was rather fascinating, in a very solemn way. Let me explain…
This mosquito had flitted down onto the counter, near the wall and away from where I was whisking peanut butter cheesecake batter. It was slightly larger than the average mosquito; not fatter, but larger. It was an old, distinguished being of it’s kind, and it was obvious to see this. I also noticed that he was struggling; struggling to move his legs, and his wings weren’t moving at all. Seeing this, I didn’t have the heart to kill the poor bastard. Some ancient part of me knew he was dying, and was willing to give him the respect and space needed for Mother Nature to reclaim his body, and Death to reclaim his soul.
As I continued with the recipe, I watched the mosquito jerk and tremble as it tried valiantly to move it’s hair-like legs. I marveled at it’s struggle to move; the Fallen King in front of me was barely able to execute movement. None of it’s legs were broken or bent, and the rest of it’s body was intact; it was simply having extreme difficulty moving itself. It was inflicted with the pain and confusion of his own body shutting down, failing him in performing what he wished it to do in order to prevail throughout life. I could see the vain desperation and grim acceptance as Death overtook it’s minuscule body, one tiny organ and vital motor function at a time. The valiant insect trembled and shook, desperately reaching it’s left front leg forward, as if taking that last step would stop the pain and stop it from falling over the edge of the living world.
I looked at the amber-colored cheesecake batter in the blue bowl in front of me to check it’s consistency, tasted it, and being satisfied I glanced back at the glorious mosquito. The King was on his back, it’s legs in the air, twitching occasionally, relaxing closer to it’s body as gravity overtook him, defeated. I felt a sadness, but also a great reverence for the phenomenon that had occurred right in front of me. I had just experienced a living body pass into the world of the dead, watched the Great King of mosquitoes refuse, and then accept, the hand of Death. The passing of emotions, the struggle of the dying body, and the passage between finite and infinite. It was beautiful, on the deepest, most natural of levels. Death is just a part of life as a heartbeat is; it is the end, but also the beginning. It is the other side of life that humans do not see very often. It is the other half, the end that creates a new beginning. Death is life’s twin, the duality that many run from, the cold that makes the warmth possible. The duality of the world is ever present, and the coming of death was something I had never experienced. Seeing it was humbling and empowering; a small reminder that I, as well as every other human, am part of the cycle as well.
Until next time,