True Story, Bro by Geoffrey Porter

True Story, Bro
Geoffrey Porter

They say garter snakes in your yard and garden are beneficial. But the snakes completely freak me out every time. Snakes seemed to really prefer my yard too, because I don’t use poisons. It hurts my poor brain to think there’s likely a nest of them out there. I seen so many colors and varieties or markings there must be thousands, or they are part chameleon.

Gardening is good for mind and body. Yet when you’re pulling out nests of weeds, and you almost pick up a little twelve-inch long slithering scaly thing, better adrenaline than the best horror movie. I realize they likely don’t even have big enough teeth to bite me and break my skin, but they send this primal urge through me.

It started in the yard, but after a few years of their presence, I stepped out of my shower, naked and wet. Snake in my hallway. He had tan diamonds running on his back on a brown background. No rattle at the end of his tail. I put pants on and used a broom to shoo him back outside where he needed to stay.

I did get bugs in the house sometimes. The no poison thing at work again.

The next snake in my house, I let him or her stay, and spent a little time each day trying to make friends with the creature. After a while, I could pick it up and hold it in my hands.

Quite an experience if you’re phobic. I found they, yes, they, more than one, liked sleeping in my bed for my warmth.

Who was I to argue? They were better than poison, and I haven’t seen new mouse tracks in weeks.


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