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Part II The Last Visible Dog

February 18, 2014

~My journey from a 10 year old child witnessing human cruelty for the first time to who I am today~

“The world being what it is, we’d be better off if we were free to wind ourselves.”

“Have you paused to consider that there is no way out? Each way out of one situation necessarily being the way into another situation.”

~Taken from the movie (1977) adapted from the novel  The Mouse and His Child (1967) written by Russell Hoban (1925 – 2011)

With the question ‘why does cruelty exist’ still swirling around in my mind I watched a movie about a father mouse and his child.  I was probably about 11 years old at the time.

When I say ‘cruelty’ I don’t mean the kind of cruelty that is avoidable.  I am referring to cruelty that causes a death or a suffering for no good purpose whatsoever, and a suffering that is beyond what anyone would ever want to endure.

The Mouse and His Child is a movie about a wind up toy.  Father and son are eternally joined together at the hands.  They long for freedom and to become ‘self-winding’.

The story is heart breaking, suspenseful and at times violent .  This movie is not for the innocent child, but I had lost my innocence of the world a year before when I witnessed the cruelty of the woman with no lip.  I was completely mesmerized but also disturbed by this movie and had no idea at the time the role it would play in answering my question as to why cruelty existed in the world.

The mouse child talks about The Last Visible Dog.  Broken and tossed to the bottom of a lake as garbage, the mouse father and his child come to rest next to a can of dog food.  The mouse child believes that if you can find the last visible dog you can find the answers to your questions, in this case how to become self winding.  The can of dog food at the bottom of the lake displays a dog holding a can of dog food which, on that can of dog food displays the same picture of a dog holding a can of dog food, and so on and so on, going on for forever.

In other words you can never get to the last visible dog. But the mouse child tries anyways.  You may click here to see what happens.

“Low in the dark of summer, high in the winter light; a painful spring, a shattering fall, a scattering regathered. The enemy you flee at the beginning awaits you at the end.” ~Frog, from The Mouse and His Child

And so I never forgot that very particular scene.  It would be 32 years before I found my last visible dog.  But I did find it eventually.  The answer to my question:  Why does cruelty exist?

It will take me half a lifetime to find the answer but I will get there.  Until next time, peace ~

Click here for Part III:  The Holocaust:  “I learned that cruelty was not isolated here and there but that it existed on a scale grander than my mind could have ever imagined.”

From → My Journey

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  1. Part I: The woman with no lip | Cruelty Free Eating

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