Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2142670-Ant-Wars
by Jacky
Rated: E · Fiction · Contest Entry · #2142670
Flash Fiction
Ant Wars

Opening my curtain one morning, after only a few weeks in my new house, I glanced out and saw a dark circle near the back of my yard. I was intrigued.

I immediately headed out to see what it was. It was ants, an ant war! When I’d bought the house, the former owner mentioned ant wars, I’d thought she was joking. Yet here one was, a huge, dark, undulating spot in my grass. Up close, I could see it was entirely made up of fighting ants, mostly one on one.

They all looked exactly alike to me, obviously not to one another. The battle was vicious. I briefly considered raking the whole mob into a leaf bag and tossing them over the fence, but then I realized how ridiculous that was. They were living beings, living their life. I couldn’t just sweep them away because I didn’t understand their conflict. Having no real reason for disturbing them, I had to let it play out.

Checking back throughout the morning, it raged for hours. Eventually, it dwindled. When I first walked out, thinking it was over, there were still some stragglers. A few fighting, some just wandering. Later, however, if I hadn’t seen it, I wouldn’t have known anything had happened. No bodies, they apparently carry all their casualties away, no sign left that they’d been there at all. I wondered who won.

Over the years, I’ve seen many ant wars. I still don’t know if there are two societies here, or twenty. When there’s a war, I don’t even know if the good guys win, or even if there are good guys. They could just be conflicted factions trying to co-exist on this tiny, fragile, piece of land. Life goes on.

Somehow, it gives me hope for the earth.

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