There is a tree-lined meadow filled with small, light-colored, furry animals, species undefined. Many. Countless. Awesome, causing the whole meadow to pulsate with life. I pick one up and hold it like a baby.
Then suddenly, as if projected on a panoramic screen, close on my left, receding towards my right, there is a continuous parade of reptiles, each one distinctly different in shape and features with dinosaur-like spines and ridges, horns and scales. They are all a medium olive grey in color, about the size of a large pig or sheep. They do not look at me or appear to notice my presence. They’re not threatening, just sort of interesting.
Now, in the meadow again at twilight, a leopard is approaching. I am protecting the same small animal. It’s a rabbit, then a kitten, then a rabbit again. I’m holding it in my arms.
Suddenly the leopard springs into attack! Now I’m in sort of a hallway, and I run into the room behind me and slam the door. The leopard snarls and howls, trying to tear down the door, which is now about six inches too short. The leopard is looking under it and clawing at us. The door comes open!
I slam it shut again. It’s now only half a door, completely open at the top. And, to my left, on the other side of the door, the leopard sits sideways, as if in a chair. He speaks to me, explaining his position, wanting the little animal. I refuse to give it up to him. We negotiate a truce.
We have had brief conversational exchanges over the years. Now he sits there calmly, no longer threatening and seems to embody some sort of deeper wisdom.