Here is her pride, rain-wet,

standing on unsteady feet,

bowed backbone arched

above bandy baby legs.

The child is looking down

at the washed out worm

that is barring her path

like a great orme.

She will not step over

nor will she go round

nor can she ignore

this curling creature.

Mother comes up to her

watches the wriggling thing

alongside her daughter

and laughs.

She moves forwards

and stamps on the worm,

leaves a bacon rind smear

across the pavement.

The daughter stamps too,

missing the streak,

but getting the message,

learning, remembering.

This is how to treat them,

the creatures of the world,

this is what you do, my pet,

you kill them, little girl.

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