Homage to a bunny
I’ve had two bunnies in my life. The first one was a gift from my friend Sarah to my daughter when she was about 7. My daughter doted on the bunny, made sure she was fed and watered, and petted it. I never got into it. A few years later, it died and we all thought it was asleep.
I am used to things that buzz, whine, scratch, bark or meow. I even had a budgie that could say its name, but a silent animal wasn’t something I could understand.
Well, I got older, and grew into a person who appreciates quiet. I think most mothers of three get there at about 48. At 48, my friend Sarah gave me another bunny. This one was 8 years old, a special Rex, and had the softest fur imaginable.
She was house trained. Litter box trained. Liked playing 3 Card Monty or a game of Shells. She could find the carrot and determine which hand it was in by grunting. Evenings, my husband and I would pet her, give her Swiss chard or carrot tops, and let her run around the living room. She had her own toys, her own bed, her own special food, bowls and quiet dominance.
If the cat bothered her, she bit her in the ass.
If the little dog bothered her, she bit him between the legs.
This little girl commanded space. She could grunt, sigh, and moan, move her ears and lastly, display different posture as her only way to communicate.
A bunny is not for a cat person.
You have to work on understanding the nuances of a bunny like contemporary art.
“In this pose the artist is saying this, but here, well, the grey tones relate to a certain self awareness and sadness.”
The bunny, like a little kid, is self-aware. It doesn’t want to become food. It doesn’t want to starve. It just doesn’t have a voice like most animals.
Snuffles could launch herself straight up and onto the couch, if she wanted attention. It took awhile before the dog, cat and rabbit could all be in the same room, but we learned the rabbit could be dominant, even in her little furry silence.
Two things I liked most about the bunny. One, she could play games. If my husband, Brian, put a small carrot in one hand, switched hands and presented two fists to the bunny, the bunny would saunter over to the correct hand. Two, she loved to snuggle. When I snuggled her, she made baby cooing sounds of delight. It certainly quieted my maternal instincts and soothed me deeply.
One thing about a 10-year-old bunny. You know how an old person can get ornery and lash out. “Get off my lawn,” she’d grumble. She really hated anything that touched her tummy in the end. She seemed to growl and stare at the jugular.
One thing else, she attuned my personal senses to hear the “frequency” of bunny. I totally got her. She got me too. And it’s that irreplaceable connection I get now at her loss.
RIP, good bunny Snuffles. My heart will have a little hole where you used to rest.