While having tea with the lovely young lady I met online, she told me the most amazing story about adventuring down a rabbit hole. She had not been chasing the rabbit when the accident happened. Instead she was running from someone—an abusive boyfriend, a domineering father, or the youth group minister who saw Jesus in her cleavage—and the hole just happened to be in her way. Darkness occurred. You could really feel the darkness, the way she told it. Her lips were so red and hot describing the black and cold descent.
She woke up pretty certain the rabbit, which was asleep beside her, and whom she had not seen at all until now, might have taken some liberties with her while she was unconscious. Food and drinks happened next, she started to feel a little larger and then a little smaller, her dress “just happened to slip off.”
I laughed and raised my teacup and said, “I can get a little larger and then a little smaller, too.”
The part that most matters, Alice said, was yet to come. She eventually married the rabbit that increasingly came to resemble her father, and they spent their honeymoon on a golf course with the most exquisite carpet of bluegrass ever planted. The rabbit hole was beside the golf course, separated by a wicked barbed wire fence. The rabbit had spent all his life, for he had grown up in the hole and inherited it after his parents' death, staring across that jagged barrier and dreaming of the amazing grass he saw there. How soft would it feel? How sweet would it taste? Alice, returned to her full size for the wedding, was able to easily lift him over this fence and then skillfully skirt it herself. They lay in the middle of the fairway, the rabbit waxing nostalgic about how he now lived the dream of his father's father by lounging here. Alice sat content though bored, as the wife of a rabbit must be.
Suddenly there was a pain in the tips of her fingers, like the bite of fire ants. Ouch, she said, pulling up her hands. Soon the stings were everywhere on her body, legs and buttocks, wherever she touched the grass. She stood up and found her bare soles now subject to the attacks, if attacks they were, for she could detect no insects and no doubt the golf course sprayed for such things. The rabbit her husband was also sorely troubled with pain, and did his best to hop out of the situation. Alice stooped to pick him up only to trip and land face-first on the ground. The agony wasted no time in finding her forehead and cheeks, and up close she saw the most amazing thing. Each blade of grass had a little chomping mouth on it, and saw-edge teeth. When she listened close—hard to do, for her propping hands were hamburger to the grass—she could almost detect the little teeth clicking together, the green lips savoring.
Both were lucky to escape with their lives. I still have a mark, she said, revealing a little divot on her bare shoulder. It was clearly a vaccination scar incurred when she was five, about ten years ago; but pretty girls must be allowed their imaginations, must be allowed to play house now and then.
Anyway, I learned a terrific lesson from it all, she continued. My husband later died from his injuries. I was so lonesome. Then one day I found the Internet and just sort of fell into it.
“You’re very mature,” I said. “You’ve already learned the value of grief and the need to move on with your life.”
Why no, she said, looking at the bottom of her glass. Then her blue eyes found me. She hesitated a moment, swallowed, and said, I learned that in life the grass is always meaner on the other side.