Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Dreams of Animals by Margaret Atwood

"Dreams of the Animals"
Margaret Atwood (1976)

Mostly the animals dream
of other animals each
according to its kind

(though certain mice and small rodents
have nightmares of a huge pink
shape with five claws descending)

: moles dream of darkness and delicate
mole smells

frogs dream of green and golden
sparkling like wet suns
among the lilies

red and black
striped fish, their eyes open
have red and black striped
dreams defense, attack, meaningful
birds dream of territories
enclosed by singing.

Sometimes the animals dream of evil
in the form of soap and metal
but mostly the animals dream
of other animals.

There are exceptions:

the silver fox in the roadside zoo
dreams of digging out
and of baby foxes, their necks bitten

the caged armadillo
near the train
station, which runs
all day in figure eights
its piglet feet pattering,
no longer dreams
but is insane when waking;

the iguana
in the petshop window on St. Catherine Street
crested, royal-eyed, ruling
its kingdom of water-dish and sawdust

dreams of sawdust

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Body Animal

Treating your body as well as you would treat an animal

If you had saw a pet that was being fed junk food, causing it to be overweight and undernourished, under exercised, and caged without a recourse to relieve stress, how would you feel? Then think how you would feel if you saw this very animal being verbally abused for being out of shape. Wouldn’t you be shocked at the owner’s horrible treatment of an innocent animal? I would call the Animal Cops! This is what many do to our own bodies.

At birth most of us were given by the universe a wonderful animal body to carry us through life. I shudder when I hear people say they hate their body.
Stating hate for your body is like blaming an animal for being abused. We blame our bodies for the very abuse we have inflicted on them. No thank you for the legs that carry them, the lungs for breathing, and the heart for beating….no thank you for the body that would be healthy and strong if given a chance. The body that struggles on, trying to compensate for the excess weight, the lack of nutrition and exercise, unrelenting stress, and the curses of “I hate you” that comes from the very person that it works so hard to support.

Treat your body as well as you would treat any animal that is in your care. Would you give cigarettes to your dog, would you put your cat under such stress that it could not sleep, would you feed your pet junk food full of chemicals??
If you failed to take care of your animal would you tell it that you hate it for being out of shape because of being malnourished with the wrong foods and too little exercise?
It is interesting how we think it is okay to treat our own bodies with such disregard and are so careful to take care of our pets. What is right and moral for your animal care is the right and moral approach for our own bodies… just like trusting pets; your body depends on it!

Taking Care of your Animal

Fresh wholesome foods, a good breakfast to start the day, lots of water
Exercise, outside time, visits with nature
Rest and relaxation, enough sleep
Positive reinforcement, love and attention
No poison….cigarettes, chemicals, toxins, abusive relationships, unrelieved stress