Hail Squirrels. Generous, forgiving re-foresters of the city, the town, the wilds. Hail for your courage while we set our storm trooper dogs upon you, laughing at your "antics" as you rush to safety, missing your warnings: The trees are disappearing, life is in danger. We must work now to correct the lack of cool green lushness for all.

Our heads should bow with shame as we trap, drown, poison you when all you seek is a home for your family and seeds for survival and for repopulating our wastelands with life, with foliage, with trees.

They have learned to live among us and try daily to remind us of our duties to the planet; we shoo them away waving arms, hoses, rifles.

What will happen when the kind hopeful squirrel realizes we are not their friends, we are not all working to better our scorched earth? Their warning cries will not then be to alert the birds, rabbits, raccoons of animal predators, but to warn them of us.

We, in our arrogance, think we control this pitiful, fragile habitat of ours. When our animal friends turn we will go without electricity, water, gas; no line or pipe above or below earth will be unsevered. Wings, teeth, claws will no longer humbly defer to our presence, for we will be seen for the plundering, murdering, arrogant fools of soft flesh, blunt teeth, slow limbs that we are-- they will attack.

You won't hear them coming though, you'll be listening to the latest music, stock quotes, political promise in your air-conditioned, HEPA-filtered, granite-countered tomb--it will be too late.

When the squirrels and the others have finished dehumanizing the land, the trees will grow again. They will erupt through the abandoned asphalt of our roads, spreading shade, safety, peace. The more timid animals will return to our cities and will marvel at all the work to be done, but it will happen. Cars will rust, buildings eventually crumble, the garden in the city will be real at last.

So, the next time a squirrel approaches you, don't think of a comical beggar, interloper in your garden, bulb-consuming spreader of disease, for none of those ideas are correct. You are being honored: Act accordingly.

Beth Garon

(The above text is taken from SURREALIST SUBVERSIONS. RANTS, WRITINGS & IMAGES BY THE SURREALIST MOVEMENT IN THE UNITED STATES. Brooklyn: Autonomedia, 2002. Edited and Introduced by Ron Sakolsky, with a Foreword by Franklin Rosemont. 742pp. $22.95)