At 2am I was woken by the sound of a cicada buzzing loudly and angrily. It was obviously inside the house and the noise continued intermittently for some time, then stopped. I assumed that Ziggy had brought one inside, and finally killed it. I’d seen him playing with a cicada in the garden the day before, and had discouraged him with a squirt of the hose.
When I got up I found the cicada corpse on the lounge carpet, collected it with a brush and dustpan and took it outside. To my surprise it started to flutter, so I placed it carefully on a low brick wall. Some time later it was still fluttering, but hadn’t moved, so I fear it is fatally broken.
Maori consider cicadas to be the bird of Rehua, the lord of kindness, and they signal warmth and plenty. There’s certainly plenty of warmth today, with the temperature already 25 degrees. While one cicada has met a sad fate, there are many more singing in the garden.
“Rehua may have lost one bird
but many more can still be heard.”