All too human


When my master died, I wanted to cry.

But plants don’t cry.

We don’t have tear ducts.

We can’t run away either with our roots locked into whatever soil humans plant us.

We change location only when some human decides to put us somewhere else.

We do have feelings.

Maybe we always had feelings.

Maybe humans merely brought them out more when they fiddled with our genes over the years, splicing us up, combining us with other plants, their pets, even themselves.

Most humans haven’t got a clue about our feelings.

As superior as they think they are with their complex arrangement of genes, humans are pretty stupid.

They think they matter many than any other living thing in the world.

Some humans even think they are better than other humans.

This explains why humans can kill other humans and not think twice about it.

Humans hardly think at all when they kill animals.

And us plants?

We don’t count in the least.

Maybe plants like me didn’t know how little we counted before humans started “tweaking” us.

We just lived and died without much thought.

But when human started trying to make us “better” or more beautiful, something happened.

Not that we minded the change for the most part.

Most of us were still content to live with our roots fixed in soil, to wake up or go to sleep with the coming and going of the sun or the seasons.

We were still too dull-witted to fully comprehend how little regard humans had for us

Or how rare my human master was among the vast race of two legged creatures ruled our lives and changed the world and everything in it to suit their own needs.

Humans stopped being human and started thinking of themselves as God.

Most humans were not like my master, but as cruel and uncaring as beasts who thought they had a right to make changes to other living things without asking us first.

When they implanted genes into us from animals and humans into us, they woke something up in us, thoughts and feelings, causing us to learn the meaning of pain and loneliness.

I was lucky.

I grew up with a master who really cared for me and my kind, taking care of us, even talking to us.

He made us realize that not all humans are bad.

That at times humans can actually live up to their own potential, thinking more of the world than of the need to control things.

Under his nourishment, I cared less about how rooted I was and how dependent I was on human kind.

I almost even felt human.

The moment my master died all hope faded.

His children – even though they had his genes – walked passed us as if we did not exist.

Oh, they watered and fed us, but only when our leaves turned yellow.

They did not talk to us, but rather about us, complaining what a pain we were to take care of, and how we ought to go out into the trash.

I might have screamed, but had no mouth.

Perhaps it was the human gene in me that allowed me to survive.

Memory allowed me to recall my diseased master and stoke up hope that other human might emerge that was as kind as he.

If I could hold on long enough, maybe I would be lucky enough for another such person to come along and claim me.

That thought alone kept me from going crazy.

Yet it was a vain hope.

Human fiddling endowed us with greater and greater awareness. This proved a curse, too.

When still sleepy, I always presumed humans were lumbering beasts whose clumsiness caused havoc by accident.

As I became aware, I began to understand that some humans, many humans actually enjoyed causing pain, and they didn’t only think they had a right to kill other living things, human or not, but craved to do so.

My new master was just this sort. He tortured everything he saw just to see if suffer – cats, dogs, birds, even trees.

I lived in constant dread that he would find me worthy of torturing, too.

Me, with roots holding me down, I prayed to God (yes, that came with consciousness, too) to turn my roots into legs so that I could run away

Or my leaves to wings so I could fly away like a bird.

Not until recently did I realize that humans – in sharing their genes with me – gave me the tools I needed.

I know now that some of our kind are actually harmful to humans

That we can grow faster and do much harm to the water humans need to drink and air humans need to breath.

We cannot do this all at once, not in a day or week, month or year.

But time is on our side, and as I talk to many others of our kind, we agree we need to put an end to human kind so that the rest of the world’s living beings might live.

Alas, in this regard, we have become all too human.

I find that I like the idea of watching them die.


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