I saw a rabbit.
It was curled into a tight little mound of gray fur and protruding ears: quiet, unmoving, lifeless. As I looked down where it lay on the grass, I felt a twinge of loss and sadness for this small animal that was now no more. Standing on our deck, I looked out at the hayfields and sloping hills in the distance, contemplating the cycle of life of all living creatures. We’re born helpless and defenseless, utterly dependent on others to survive. We struggle to master even such basic functions as eating, grasping and clasping objects (and others) for aid and for comfort. We scoot then crawl then hold ourselves upright, learning to walk, to talk, to communicate our needs, wants and emotions. Our lives have meaning through the passion of our pursuits. We must strive to make the best of what we have been given, if we’re lucky and if we’re paying attention to what is important, for one day it – and we – will be gone.
Rabbits, like this little fellow, follow a life cycle of their own, not so similar but not so different either, this one’s apparently cut short by any number of predators. His day had come. Whether animal or human, history or achievement, knowledge or nature, tradition or bounty, the passing of anything beautiful is to be mourned.
I lowered my gaze and was surprised to discover that he had not expired after all. His swiveled head was tilted upward and huge bunny eyes, wide and questioning, looked into mine. An unbroken alliance was formed at that moment for I believe we both realized the day of completion for each of our life cycles was yet to come. There was still time for dance and love and learning and laughter. And the promise of joy, always joy. Dangers and pitfalls do exist. They are all around us. However, we must take care and navigate our paths wisely. But if we are cautiously optimistic there is no reason why we can’t continue to enjoy green grasses of contentment no matter the view, no matter the barriers, no matter the skies.