Once upon a time I was visited by a strange extremely, large black feline who honored my presence by appearing at my front door. Its back and tail was strong with long legs, a small white blaze on his chest sporting yellow eyes. This lovely cat was as curious about me as I was of him. I stroked his fur and he instantly began to purr. I had never seen this fabulous feline around the neighborhood before. I asked some of my neighbors if they were missing a large black cat. After a couple of hours I spotted a young man with that “I’m searching for my cat look.” I called him over and asked him if he had lost a black cat. “Yes!” said the man eagerly. I brought the cat out and he introduced the cat as Spook. The cat was a bit anxious and didn’t like being picked up. The owner was shocked Spook liked me. “He doesn’t usually take to anyone,” stated the owner. I felt grateful. I said my goodbyes to the huge black cat and continued on my way.
Above Photo of a black cat similar to my new friend Spook.
The evening before I was visited by my wild hare pal, I call Tuff.
Last May my brown furry friend had an ivory colored tuft on the back of its’ neck while it was morphing into her brown Spring coat. I saw her resting in the back field for the evening. I spoke to her and waved. She spotted me, stared intensely with its round eye glare and a bit of a head nod. Tuff continued grazing on clover. Tuff, wished to let me know she was fine and survived the harsh cold winter of the North with the help of my organic carrot supply. Mother Nature feeds them through summer to fall then I help out through the winter.
This animal visitation reminded me of some of the folklore of black cats, not all is negative. According to Scottish cat-lore if a unfamiliar black cat appears at your front door it means good fortune. In Egyptian cat-lore black cats were revered creatures attributed explicitly to the Egyptian goddess Bastet, the cat goddess. Egyptian households believed they could gain favor from Bastet by hosting black cats in their homes. Another Black cat Superstition: A black cat in the audience on opening night foretells a successful play. The Scandinavian goddess Freyja drove a cart or chariot pulled by two black cats named Bygul and Trjegul. In Appalachian cat-lore if a person had a sty on their eyelid rubbing a black cat’s tail against it would quickly speed healing.
According to African animal lore the wild hare appears as a trickster in many folktales.
Wild Hares were acknowledged as messengers of the underworld since they pop in and out of the ground as they please. Hares and rabbits were also favored as Spring deities in Germanic folklore. According to witch-lore add a few rabbit hairs into a witch bottle for protection. Carry a talisman of a rabbit or hare for good fortune.
Hares were revered as a sacred fertility animal by the ancient Greek goddess Aphrodite and god Eros.
Above Photo: Hare similar to my pal Tuff.
Remember animals wild or domestic need to be treated with kindness and respect. You never know when they will show up to gift us with their lovely presence.
Written by Nifty Bryn Buckles.
Sources and Reference:
“A Dictionary of English Folklore”. Oxford University Press. 2000
“Superstition Bash Black Cats“. Amherst, New York: Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. 2011.
Featured Image credited to artist Lynnette Shelley