Dear Readers, Since this post appeared we have undergone many changes. Our dear Michelle (in the photograph) has died of a liver ailment. We moved to the animated and transformative beach. Benicio del Toro, the perky black dog and Miss Junie are living with us in our beach side apartment. We found a small farm for a few of our adopted dogs, several were placed and the less fortunate were taken to a shelter. It was a painful time. I send you all a most lovely wish for both joy and compassion in your lives. Sincerely, Ms. Oasis (Cynthia)
Oasis Animals: Michelle's Eyes
Michelle, ma belle, sont des mots qui vont tres bien ensemble-
tres bien ensemble...
(The Beatles/Paul McCartney)
What is so compelling about our animal friends? I love Ma Belle, Michelle's, face. I love to press my forehead against hers and send her all my love. Contact with Michelle gives me such a feeling of profound well being. I know this is not unusual. Many people have a special connection with an animal friend.
I also feel great warmth (and sometimes anger) toward Miss Junie. She claims all flat surfaces with a sense of authority that defies all boundaries.
Lately, we have been having a territory battle over the large table that I use as a desk. She determinedly knocks over my pile of research books and brushes her paw across the carefully stacked and ordered mail while she makes herself quite comfortable as owner of the table. But what can I do? She's the queen of the house, and is likely to punish anyone who attempts to constrain her. (These punishments are unspeakably naughty! If you have a territorial cat, you completely understand. If not, it's best not to go into it.
Recently, she has allowed me to pick her up and hold her in a close hug. Her tolerance of my affection has made me so much more permissive about her eccentricities.
This lovely yogi cat (Lionheart, Temple Cat) is from the Seven Centers Yoga Arts in Sedona, Arizona (photo credit and to read the latest newsletter click here.)
A love song to our animal friends...
Only You by Ringo Starr's quirky video expresses this sentiment! (Click to watch the video!)
Only you, can make this world seem bright.
Only you, can make the darkness bright.
Only you and you alone can thrill me like you do
and fill my heart with love for only you
Only you can make this change in me.
For it's true, you are my destiny.
When you hold my hand, I understand the magic that you do.
You're my dream come true.
My one my one and only you.
Introducing Benicio del Toro (AKA Beni' and 'Nicio)!
He is the classic dog. Completely loyal. Completely protective. He is our oldest stray. One day, his mother, Ms. Nellie, arrived at our gate and just waited. She waited until the night. She waited until the next morning. She found her way into the fenced in back area and settled in. We fed her and then it was all over. Little Ms. Nellie was pregnant. The following day, she had our little bull- headed, Beni!
A few words of love by the renowned (and occasionally sardonic) poet, Billy Collins:
The way the dog trots out the front door
without a hat or an umbrella,
without any money
or the keys to her dog house
never fails to fill the saucer of my heart
with milky admiration.
Who provides a finer example
of a life without encumbrance—
Thoreau in his curtainless hut
with a single plate, a single spoon?
Ghandi with his staff and his holy diapers?
Off she goes into the material world
with nothing but her brown coat
and her modest blue collar,
following only her wet nose,
the twin portals of her steady breathing,
followed only by the plume of her tail.
If only she did not shove the cat aside
and eat all his food
what a model of self-containment she would be,
what a paragon of earthly detachment.
If only she were not so eager
for a rub behind the ears,
so acrobatic in her welcomes,
if only I were not her god.
"Dharma" by Billy Collins, from Sailing Alone Around the Room. Random House, 2002.
And if that is not enough, here is a story that you can read to your little ones:
I’m a Big BoyIt was time for bed, but Joey was afraid of the dark.
“Go to bed Joey”, his mom said.
The room was dark. A big shadow moved on the wall.
“Mom” Joey yelled, “Mom!”
“What is it son?”
“There’s a big shadow on the wall!”
“A shadow,?” His mom asked “It’s from the big tree outside your window!”
Joey wanted to be brave but when his mom left, the shadow grew!
Joey could not fall asleep and only by holding his stuffed animal, Buster Brown, could he quiet his fear.
The next morning Joey went to the park with his mom. He had dark shadows underneath his eyes. He was cranky.
He met his friend Suzy.” Hey Joey, do you want to play ball?” Joey didn’t answer.
You look sad. She asked him, “What’s wrong, Joey?”
Joey said, “I’m sad”.
“Why are you sad?” asked Suzy.
“It’s a secret. I’ll tell you if you promise not to tell.”
Joey told Suzy everything, even the part about the shadow and how his stuffed animal, Buster Brown helped him fall asleep.
“I think I know how to help you, but it’s a surprise. I’ll come over this afternoon.”
Later, Suzy talked to her mother and then, they came over to Joey’s house with a gift.
When Joey and his mom opened the door, they saw that it was a soft fluffy puppy!
“Oh mom, can I keep him? And can he sleep in my room?” Joey asked.
She smiled, “Yes dear, but only if you are a big boy.”
Joy said to his new brown puppy, “I am a big boy, Buster Brown!”And everyone laughed.
Joey knew he was a big boy because he took care of a real puppy and big boys are not afraid of the dark!
Here's wishing you all the puppy love you want!