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Just Days Old

A childhood memory.

A light lavender scent carried in the gentle breezes as a young girl steadily ran after a small yellow butterfly. Surrounding her were rows of petunias, periwinkles, and juniper trees. Cool grass touched her feet; the breeze flowed through her hair.  She continued to chase the butterflies but stops near a base of a gnarled willow to pick some of the abundant wild flowers. Grasping handfuls of poppy and bluebonnet bouquets, the girl saw a cottontail skip near the juniper.  The bunny stopped and settled by a patch of budding clovers. Curious, the girl sat down to observe the hare. She quietly noticed its tiny tender paws, radar-like twitching ears, and fluffy cotton tail. Its fur was a darkened sand and chestnut brown. The small creature wiggled its adorable button nose and twitched its whiskers. Beginning to nibble on the soft blossoming clover, the bunny paused and gazed up at the girl with its big brown eyes.


KABOOM! The sound deafened the girl’s ears. Looking back at her fury friend, she only noticed bloodstained grass and a lifeless carcass. Fear froze the child. Emerging from the woods, a man trudged toward the kill. He wore a bright orange jacket and hunting boots. Holding a large shot gun in his left hand; his countenance showed no emotion. The man briefly glanced at the girl and then onto the ground. The stranger picks up the defunct cottontail. While leaving the scene, he mutters, “There will be stew tonight.”       


- Karaghen Hudson, October 2010

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