WARNING: There is a potentially disturbing dead pet photo part way through this post. It is black and white and kind of fuzzy, but still, read at your own risk.
The last of our four zebra finches has died.
She was not unlike the youngest of three or more children in a family in that there are no photographs of her, which is just as well. Aside from a bright orange beak, she had little in the way of distinctive markings, and it was difficult to get a decent picture of her without her making crazy escape attempts to squeeze out through the cage door and skitter across the floor.
When she first came to live with us from a home that could no longer keep her, she came with another male finch, whom she would completely denude to line her nest every time she laid eggs. Then, she ate her own eggs. She was nervous. She did not have a pretty song to sing. She was suspicious of everyone but her original mate and threw her shit on the floor.
I have felt guilty about her since we got her, because I just did not like her. I love animals, all animals. Even the lowly naked mole-rat has its draw for me. This particular bird, though, just did not attract me in the least. The first time I saw her, I felt disappointed that I had agreed to take her. I could see she felt the same when she fixed her beady eyes and surveyed me suspiciously.
When we moved into this new apartment just over a year ago, she finally seemed to take a liking to me and would natter at me when I came home and yell back and forth with me when I would enter the room and holler IT'S A PARTY! WE'RE HAVING A FUCKING PARTY!. I took to disliking her less, but I just couldn't find it in myself to actually want her. Despite my aversion, I fed her and watered her and talked to her every day. Luckily, she had the intelligence of electrified asparagus and a relatively short lifespan.
Now, I am going to show you something which may make you wonder if I am one of those people who keeps bodies in their refrigerator. No, I am sorry. That's wrong. I am going to show you something that will make you understand that I am exactly the sort of person who keeps bodies in their refrigerator.
But, I swear, the above photograph does not prove any kind of sickness on my part. It is a sign of my desire to show at least some respect to her before she is gone from this world for good. I am going to go on a walk this afternoon and put her beneath the lilac bush to which our other finches were taken when they died. As little as I liked her, I cannot do her the injustice of throwing her out tied inside a black garbage bag. She at least deserves a natural end to her body in an existence that was anything but natural. You know, from dust to dust and all that.
I want a crow or a cat to eat her and poop her out all over town just as should happen to little birds everywhere.