2020-2021 Youth Writing Contest Special Recognition – Junior Category – Maine (Grades 6–8)
The Loud and Annoying Animals of the Woods
Luke Boissonneault, 6th grade, Massabesic Middle School
One time, I remembered when I killed a squirrel. I went out in the cold wet leaves. Tired and soaking wet, I felt waterlogged. Then all of a sudden, the sun started shining and a squirrel popped up, just like in a movie. He spotted me with his keen eye. Then, “bam” with no hesitation he’s off to the races. I jerked up my gun faster than you could say chimichangas. I held my breath, calmed down, relaxed and squeezed – paa – I let out my breath as the squirrel dropped out of the tree without a heartbeat.
On a hot sunny day I was doing online zoom learning (BORING!) and it was my one-hour lunch break, my favorite part of the day. I decided to spend it squirrel hunting. I had my whole break planned, down to the kind of turkey in my sandwich, all the way to the square inch where I would sit. I decided to go squirrel hunting instead of playing games on my Xbox while eating a sandwich or watching TV. I started into the woods all alone. I was like a character in a movie, tippy-toeing. I was silent but deadly.
I was sitting on a rock and taking a lot of big deep breaths to ensure I was calm and focused when an animal arrived. I intensely looked over a hill for squirrels and all of a sudden, “Bam!! Snap!! Booommm!!!” I said to myself, “Oh no, what was that?” I remembered the last time I had heard something that loud was when a person walked up on me.
I heard it again, the crunching leaves, the snapping sticks. It felt as if someone knew where I was and was hunting me down. I laid down in a bush and scooped sticks and leaves and quickly tossed them all over me, hoping that the big animal would walk past me and not know I was ever there. I was still lying in the bush then I heard it louder, “Snap!! Bam!!’’
The anticipation was killing me, like if that thing didn’t kill me then the anticipation would. I got my gun up just in case it is a bear. I might be able to shoot it in the eye and run away.
All of a sudden there they were?? It turned out to be a lot smaller than I thought, it was a … grey squirrel. It turns out, when grey squirrels play, they cause a big racket or a lot of noise.
I stood up and try to shoot the squirrels, but I was too shaky. My legs were still trembling from the fear earlier. When I tried to chase them, I could barely move. I figured that is probably a sign that I should go home. Once I finally got to my house, I looked for my mom and told her the story and what I learned, which is that squirrels are very loud.