"Grrr...!"

I dreamed I was warm and snug inside someplace warm. I couldn't see, but I could hear and feel someone close to me. I finally grew so big that I was propelled out of that place into a warm hole under the ground. 

Mother mouse with babies nursing

Around me, other tiny ones were squeaking and crawling around looking for food.  I found something warm that smelled good and I started sucking on it. "Nice." I sucked some more. 

"Warm skin and hair. Yes. That feels good. But who is this other one trying to push me out of the way? Wait a minute, that's my place. Oh, well, let's see if I can find another." 

After a few days my eyes opened and I saw my mother. She was a brown mouse with big whiskers.  My brothers and sisters were feeding on her belly. My body had turned once again. I scampered about on four legs and had a long tail. 

One night we all crawled out of our hole. Mother showed us where the nuts and grains fell and where sweet fruit could be found. Our voices were developing and we chattered "Squeak, squeak" to each other. We learned it wasn't safe to be outside for long, so we'd stuff our cheeks with food and scurry back to our hole in the ground to enjoy our meal. 

I was on just such an expedition one evening out on the grassy plain when I was grabbed by sharp claws and hoisted off the ground. I knew I was done for and so I was, for the creature killed me with his sharp beak. It never seemed to end, these dreams of killing or being killed. 

In my next dream I was born as a tiny mountain lion in a den deep in the woods. Our mother took good care of us, gently moving us from place to place in her mouth.  We kittens practiced our pouncing and fighting, and licked our fur to keep it clean and nice. 

Mountain Lion kittens playing  

When we grew older, we each went our own way. I prowled uphill from a pond looking for mice and other animals. When I caught one, I used my sharp claws and teeth to tear its body apart. 

When I was full grown, a male cat started paying attention to me. 

 

“Interested? I’m a big strong guy.”

“Grrr! Go, away. Let me be.” 

“Common, Baby, you really want me. Let me convince you.” 

“Oooh... If you insist.” 

After we mated, he disappeared. My belly grew bigger and bigger, and I started looking for a nice hole to hide in. The pains started that night. I pushed and pushed and finally several small wet creatures popped out. I licked their eyes and fur until they started mewing and crawling toward my belly to suck. 

They grew up fast. I would hunt at night and bring food back for us to feast on. Then I showed them how to hunt for themselves. About this time, I started pushing them away so they would depend on themselves and not me. Over my life, I had many litters of babies and raised them all.

Another time I was born a young fawn in the forest. Almost immediately I could stand on my four feet to nurse at my mother's belly. Instead of claws, I had hard hooves that protected my feet when I ran. When I was older, I grew large antlers on my head. I used them as weapons to fight with other male bucks over female deer. 

"She's mine!"

"Out of my way, she's mine!"

"You'll have to fight me if you want her."

"Bring it on!"

 

And so we would fight until one of us won. But when the herd was threatened by those big cats with sharp claws, we bucks used our antlers and hooves to drive them off. 

Horse with mane and tail flying in the wind I had hard hooves, too, when I was one of the wild horses in a herd. We horses stood tall and could see longer distances for danger. Our legs were strong and we could run very fast. Sometimes we ran away from danger, but sometimes we ran just for the sheer joy of it. The sound of our galloping hooves, the feel of the wind on our backs, the beauty of moving together - there was nothing like it! 

I also lived as a wild dog in a pack. The male dogs would fight to see which one was in charge. Often this happened when we killed food. The head dog got to eat first and sometimes other dogs challenged him.

Two dogs snarling

“Grrr! I killed this rabbit. It belongs to me.” 

“Don't you dare! I'm in charge here. You wait your turn.”  

“Snarl!…Back off or I’ll hurt you.” 

“Grrr! Don't you dare!...."  

And so it went, one furry body after another... until I found myself born into a family of large apes. 

What was this? I had just two feet and could walk almost upright. I had fingers and could pick things up. On lazy afternoons I would lie around with the others and pick insects out of their hair. 

Best of all, I could do more than growl. I let everyone know what I felt with grunts, chatters, and shrieks. We did a lot of talking, my family and I. 

“Fruit! Nice juicy fruit!” 

“Where? Where? Let me at it.” 

“Here, here. See?  

Apes and bananas

“Yum…Yum…You’re right.”

”Let me have some! You’re taking it all.”  

When I was a very old ape, I lay sick and slowing started slipping out of my body. As I stood beside my corpse, I knew I didn't want to be an animal any longer. I had come to the end of a long dream, but still I had no idea of who I really was.

As a matter of fact, the most important part of my dream was just beginning…

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