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Thursday, April 21, 2011


Of Pastel Chicks and Bunnies

When I was little and even up to about the age of eleven, I wanted a pastel colored bunny or chick for Easter.

It wasn’t something I dreamed up.

I saw them every spring when Green’s Feed And Seed used to be across from the Municipal Auditorium: they were in cages on the sidewalk and I wanted one so badly! All the bunnies were stacked up in cages that seemed a mile high. Same for the chicks. Didn’t matter which I thought as long as I got one.

The dazzling array of Easter colors swirled around on the bunnies and the chicks: To me they were the most beautiful things I had ever seen. And I wanted one.

Every Easter I was sure I would get one or the other.

And every Easter I didn’t.

Sure I liked the candy, egg hunting and the dressing up part but deep inside I was in utter disappointment.

About the age of eleven, I thought sure that I was going to finally get a rabbit or chicken as a delivery man came to our house on the day before Easter. But the package didn’t look like something alive was in it: it was too small

My mother insisted I open it and it was a corsage full of violets.

My heart sunk again.

Funny how over a period of time and knowledge that Easter colored bunnies and chicks would grow up to be big and white, I realized that I my dream was not real smart. And I was and still am deathly afraid of chickens due to them jumping on my feet when my family was at a farm. As for the bunny getting big, I also realized that it wouldn’t last long with my big cat.

Oddly enough, it later turned out that violets became my favorite flower. And I didn’t appreciate the trouble that my parents had gone to get me the corsage. I wanted the bunny or chick. But I did learn to appreciate that a lot of things we think we want later turn out to not be so. The dyeing of bunnies and chicks turned out to be hazardous to them and became against the law and they were never seen again by the human eye—at least in Charleston. And would I want a chick now? No way. As for bunnies, I get to see a lot of them in the wild.

With Easter approaching, I always think back to my wants a long time ago and I realize that my parents knew a lot more than I did. But those Easter colored bunnies and chicks sure were breathtaking!

Sherry Hill
*Published in the WVGazette

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