It was an early summer evening. The sun had just set. In the gradually increasing darkness, little lights began to rise from the tall grass. As they rose, they also blinked. The evening’s serenade had begun. Each hopeful light was signaling for a mate.
“Mate with me.” “Mate with me!” Each light blinked its appeal. “Mate with me!”
Human viewers had no way to know if mating was successful, but apparently so, every year the fireflies reappeared.
Over human generations, though, a difference was noted. It did not take profound belief to note that, after the passage of half a century, which also witnessed a rising amount of pesticide, the number of these lights in the night had decreased.
“When I was young,” the great grandmother noted. “There were far more lightening bugs.”
“And, when you were little, you lived next to a creek, so they had more water than here in the meadow where it is so high and dry that bedrock is exposed in many places,” her son replied.
“And there were no pesticides then,” she concluded.
“You can stop that?” He asked.
“No,” she replied wearily. “I’m just homesick for those little pleasures I remember.”
“As a child you had less to worry about.”
“That’s true,” she agreed. “As I got older, I worried if I would get married. Then, when you came along, I began to worry about you.”
“And I worry about my kids.”
“Being a parent means worrying.”
“Unless you’re a lightening bug.” He added.
“Or any other kind of insect.”
“Yep.” He agreed.