I caught him at last, that cricket, the enemy of my sleep! He was hiding behind my shrine, throwing his chirp so it sounded like it came from the black mirror or the bowl of artificial fruit. I caught him first in the beam of my flashlight, then in my hand, then in a drinking glass just long enough to snap a photo before banishing him to the outer darkness.
They say a cricket in the house is good luck, but I think a cricket outside is even better luck — for the cricket, at least. It’s not very likely to get lucky if it stays in here — take it from me. Besides, this house isn’t big enough for the two of us. Last night, after having kept quiet all evening, it started up just as I was drifting off, and I had to retreat upstairs and shut the door.
Why do field crickets come indoors every year, I wonder? I suppose they like the acoustics, and not unlike some poets I know, it doesn’t bother them if they’re performing for an audience of zero. Which wouldn’t be such a problem, I suppose, if their refrain were a little more varied and a little less shrill.
Just as I finish typing that last sentence, I glance over toward the wall next to the file cabinet and there’s another cricket! Or maybe it’s the same one — I only took him a hundred feet from the house. I dive for him, but he leaps away and scuttles under the moulding. Crap. I guess I’ll be sleeping upstairs for a while.