We sat in our country kitchen sipping on coffee. I had just seen the morning headlines, “Vigilantes kill two illegals.” Looked like someone was taking the immigration policy into their own hands, but before I could read more, my wife Mary interrupted.
“Look, Joe, we have visitors,” she shouted, pointing at them.
I didn’t know where they came from, but they were on my property again. “Damn, they’re not welcome here.” I was so angry I could have killed those trespassers right then. I stood up, seriously thinking of doing just that. Mary grabbed my arm before I could get to them.
“But they work so hard. I admire how industrious they are, and they work for nothing but crumbs.”
“They’re disgusting. I don’t want them around here. They’re not like us. Who knows what kind of disease they carry? Another thing is I wouldn’t eat any food they touched.”
“Look how hard they work for only a few measly scraps. That’s one thing I admire about them,” Mary said as she pushed me back into my chair.
“Yeah, but If you’re kind enough to send one back, it seems like two return and before long, the numbers are more than we can accommodate. The way to end their migration is to let them starve, or better yet put poison in their food so the entire family will die.” I was inspired to give this retort because of the headlines in the morning paper.
“Measures such as those are much too extreme for me,” Mary gave me that doe-eyed look, the one that gets me to do almost anything she wants.
“You know I try to be gentle and kind. I try to deport them gently one at a time, but I’m getting tired of seeing them all around and weary of picking them up and gently setting them down on the other side of the fence. If you allowed me to spread that poison to kill every one of those that come uninvited, the problem would be solved.”
“I don’t believe it’s right to take any life,” Mary said and went looking for her Bible so she could show me some scripture that said it’s wrong to kill.
“Damn it, do I owe them a chance to live and reproduce until there’s so many that I have to leave?” I shouted at her because I saw she had her good book open and was ready to preach. It wasn’t fair to me to let them live on my property, and some of them lived in my house. I went to the barn and dug a tin of poison out of a metal locker.
Mary trotted along beside me. She pled with me not to do what I was about to. “If you use that, you’ll not only kill those who trespass, but their families too.” There were tears in her eyes, but I would do what I thought I had to.
I’d teach those pesky immigrants not to mess with me. I put out the poison specially formulated to kill ants and roaches.
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flash fiction > short stories