Ben lives in our yard, free to hop through the leaves, nibble on grass, and dart away when Lola tries to catch him.
He once lived in a wood and wire cage on the side of our garage. His food and water bowl were filled every few days and he watched the world through the holes in the chicken wire. This was for his safety.
For months I tried to talk Savannah into letting him go free. “Haven’t you seen the way he kicks his heels when we let him hop through the grass?” I would ask her. “Yes, he may only make it a few days, but they will be the happiest days of his life.” I would tell her.
Ben has been living happy and free in our yard now for many months. He’s made it longer than we ever expected. Every time I spot him across the yard my heart swells. And I think about myself. When my days are numbered, when I’m feeble and can’t take care of myself as I once could, please don’t lock me away in a cage. If I beg to stay at my home, where I’m free, please let me stay. Don’t make me watch the world through a cage. Yes, my days may be shorter living in my freedom, but I will go out clicking my heels.