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June 2006
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June 2007

Rabbit

The Mexicans put a collar on this rabbit and fed it lettuce. The boy called him Tiny and brought him in the house each night. During the day, the rabbit roamed the neighborhood in tight, measured hops. It fed on the Kelly’s potted dill and parsley. It napped under Monroe’s broken down Cutlass. The dogs next door erupted into howls as it crossed their yard, keeping a distance of one yard from the chainlink fence.

The old lady across the street would scuttle down the driveway to collect her mail and spot his dark little tail moving in the weeds. She reached a hand into her azaleas to pet him.
“Here comes Peter Cottontail,” she said. “Come here, Peter.”

The rabbit did not answer to any name. The rabbit was a typical seven pound Sable buck. His head, feet, ears, and tail were a darker shade of dirt brown than the rest of his body. With its little green collar and bell, it resembled a Siamese cat.

Days would go by without a rabbit sighting. Then, early one Saturday, Mr. Kelly would crank the lawn mower and send the rabbit bounding out of the herb garden.

“Why hasn’t it been hit by a car yet?” said Mrs. Kelly, watching it through her screen door. “Or eaten by a cat?”

“The cats are scared of ol’ Bugs,” replied her husband. Just the sight of the animal made him pause and grin.

“My dill,” said his wife.

The rabbit crossed Spring Street in eight soft movements. The little Latinas, jumping rope in the front yard, took no notice of their pet.