This morning walked up to our old house to check the new rabbit. Theo replaced our mama goat with a rabbit after having to witness his beloved goat gorged and devoured by dogs. While in Canada Theo sharied his love for the rabbit; how the rabbit real tame; how she push she nose up against the wire coup as soon as she hear the crunch of leaves under his feet; how she bow she head and wait for his hand to find the sweet spot between her eyes. On the phone Theo laughing, “She my main source of affection while maya and you away.”
When I got up to the coup this morning two pink eyes from behind a maze of vine. “Marshmellow,” I whisper, “You come back?” Tears gather and trip onto cheeks. Theo’s rabbit a perfect replica of my childhood companion, Marshmellow.
I must have been 5 years old when we carried Marshmellow home from the pet store. I can still feel the pride in my reddening cheeks as neighbouring kids hurried over to see what was in the cage. That tiny pink nose up and down, up and down. Mom with cigarette between fingers feeling the calm of making wrong a right. A week earlier we went to pick up a puppy promised to my brother and I. Reality set in as soon as we reached the yard and the low sharp yelps of a puppy ripped through the air. A strong, “Nope,” from our mother’s face as she ushered us back into the car. Two bawling children all the way home.
Marshmellow arrived as a peace offering a week later. Our dear beloved noiseless pet lived in the basement all winter and in the spring/summer/fall she occupied the backyard. She was my childhood companion for 7 years. I laugh thinking how emotionally unavailable a rabbit really is and yet still she provided more than what the adults could provide in those times.
I looked into the eyes of Theo’s rabbit, and whispered thanks, ‘Thanks dear Marshmellow, it was enough and not enough, and I appreciated every moment of your beautiful existence.