Saturday, July 2, 2011

Must Read - Soul of a Dog by Jon Katz

I found another blog, "Bedlam Farm Journal"  to follow... and lots more books to read.

I know that I will love following this blog just because of his wonderful photography.  You can see the author's joy and love for each creature in each shot.

And there are videos of his animals on the farm!

John Katz is an author I have heard about and I have seen his books in passing in the bookstore.
Funny how a photograph can draw one in so completely.

Then, of course, you start reading and you are hooked.

As the cover states, this book is about the 'Reflections on the spirits of the the animals of Bedlam Farm'.
The book consists of a series of wonderful essays on the special inhabitants of the farm and glances on and off of the questions on whether or not animals have souls... and in one chapter, questions whether they can they go to heaven.

Heaven would be extremely lacking and melancholy if there are no animals there.

There was a great old Twilight Zone episode where an old mountain man and his old 'dawg' was headed to the Gates of Heaven, truly looking forward to it, and when upon meeting the 'angel' at the Gates, was told, sorry, no dogs allowed.  But the man, himself was most welcome.
The old man turned around, refusing to go in without his dog.

Of course, in the end, it ended up that the gates he originally came up to was Hell...and a real 'angel' found him and escorted him ...and his dog...safely through the real Gates of Heaven.

Good old Twilight Zone!

But getting back to the book...

What is even  more interesting to me though is the question why some animals....including a 2500 pound steer or a chicken who loves to ride on a donkey's back...seem to have more light and intelligence behind the eyes, and a definite character and personality... than other creatures that may inhabit the same farm. 

I think all of us who have lived on farms have had this thought pass through their mind more than once.
Is it just human interaction with certain animals that cause us to anthropomorphize a creature more?

Most animals on our farm were just farm animals.  They chewed their cud, laid their eggs, and passed through life just one day at a time till they died.

And then you have the extraordinary creatures that looked into your eyes and communed with your soul.

Anyhow, find a special spot out of doors on a glorious evening, read "Soul of a Dog"... and enjoy.