dMo's blog

Monday, May 21, 2007

Rabbit Lost. Rabbit Found.

Rabbit is more than a stuffed animal. Rabbit talks. He's got a soul, because Pola gave him a piece of her little girl self. He is imbued with the spirit of child-like unconditional love.

He is innocent. He is serious. He is curious. He is trusting. He is vulnerable. He is Pola's memory of being 5 years old, talking to her Mommy.

Sometimes when Pola travels she leaves Rabbit with me to keep me company. I take him with me on trips. Rabbit has been to Poland, Italy, Russia, England and the USA. All in the last 6 months. Rabbit has been on airplanes and looked out windows 30000 feet to the fields below. Rabbit has sat on my lap watching a sendup of Chekhov's "the Seagull" as an operetta (he thought that was a lot more fun than the serious 4-hour version of "three sisters" we saw the night before -- I fell asleep occasionally but he filled me in on the details). Rabbit sits by the bed and reminds me why I love Pola so much in those 10 seconds between lying down and dropping off.

Rabbit is no ordinary stuffed animal. That's why when I realized Rabbit was lost, I almost cried. 20:30, Sunday night in Sparta NJ. 4 hours of highway back to Cabridge MA and a day of work ahead. No time for this, yet I tore the car apart looking for him. Twice.

Pola did cry. Little girl tears.

The day before Rabbit was looking out the passenger's side window as we sped uptown on the West Side Highway.

"WOW" he said.

"Wow" he said again. He peeked, then hid his eyes, then stared, letting the images flow fast & free. Concrete, stone and steel and a gray sky for a backdrop. Buildings flashed by like falling dominoes. This was no place for Rabbits and he knew it. He dug himself deeper into Pola's scarf.

"Do other Rabbits live here?" He said.

"Of course they do, silly" Pola said. "Some of them are real, and some are like you."

Rabbit looked confused, but didn't let his attention stray from the view for long.

He was warm and safe on Pola's breast, but still vigilant for the next mishap, which, in a place like this couldn't be far in the future.

And it wasn't. Car parked, Pola swept out of the door and swung the scarf around her neck.

Two days later she remembered this movement and knew, as only a child knows, that Rabbit was by the side of the road, possibly underneath a parked car, on west 99th between Broadway and West End.

So we planned our route through the city instead of breezing by on I84 or 287. We got stuck in traffic. We edged into position on the George Washington bridge. We escaped down the ramp onto the West Side Highway. And at 22:00, double parked by the side of the road, 5 seconds after stopping, Pola was hugging rabbit to her breast. He was a bit wet. A bit dirty. But ok, overall. And still there, waiting, two days after having been dropped from a scarf in that practiced, hurried and very adult gesture: the scarf about the neck flourish.

It was a small Miracle on 99th street.

Rabbit had grown up fast in those two days. He was still himself. It wasn't long before he was chattering away at us about his adventures - the rats and the smelly garbage and the rain and all the Cats that sniffed him, but for some reason decided not to eat him. But I detected a faint weariness to his tone. He was no longer care-free. Nevertheless, it takes a lot to kill a soul like Rabbit. More cruelty than this world has bestown upon the three of us.

We lost Rabbit. We found him. The story in between has been told many times. Pinnochio. Winnie the Pooh. A child, living in a state of flux, bridges the gap between the internal and external world, between the real and imaginary, naturally, easily as breathing. An adult, having settled into himself, performs this piece of magic consciously, breaking through a stale situation by infusing it with the transformative power of love. A less common, but by virtue of being conscious, more cathartic act.

Perhaps, as we grow older, and start growing up, Pola and I will let Rabbit come back to his proper place inside of us. Where he will once again become real / alive. And then he can soften our meat-headed disagreements before they even begin, instead of after, as he does now, sitting on my chest and explaining, seriously, as a child to another: "You're being silly, stop this instant". It's hard to fight with Pola when I see Rabbit in her heart. It makes the cruel things I say and do when I'm mad actually feel cruel and unworthy. We found Rabbit. I hope he'll find his home in our hearts. That way we'll never lose him again.


At 6:08 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are you fuckin' serious? The fckuer was still there? And it wasn't violated by a gang of street dawgs? I say we make a movie about this rwabit and his (her) Harlem night. Z-rated. RRRRRRRR!

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