The Peanut Cow

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Stephen Whiteside
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The Peanut Cow

Post by Stephen Whiteside » Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:39 am

The Peanut Cow

© Stephen Whiteside 18.10.2011

It’s not as safe as you might think. But it will do for now. Excuse me if I have something to eat. I think you should wait a while before having anything else.

Horatio then watched with astonishment as Magnifico leaned into the big green bag once more, and pulled out another lump of cheese. It was a big, heavy bag. He hadn’t noticed it when they had moved in here from outside, but obviously Magnifico had carried it with them. And who knew how far he had already come? Or how heavy it had been when he set out? He must be one hell of a strong mouse!

You don’t look all that strong, Magnifico, but you obviously are.

I’m strong enough. I’m not training any more, and I’ve lost a fair bit of condition, but I still do all right.

So what’s in the bag apart from cheese, then?

Apart from cheese? Nothing, apart from cheese.

Nothing? You mean you just brought cheese?

Yep. Just cheese. Mice like cheese.

Well, rats like cheese too, but not JUST cheese. Don’t you get sick of it?

Don’t know. Never really thought about it. I guess that means I don’t.

You sure you haven’t got any peanut butter in there? I love peanut butter. Crunchy, preferably, not smooth. Sorry if I sound a bit picky. It’s not that big a deal I suppose, but crunchy just makes beautiful sounds against my teeth.

No, no peanut butter. Only cheese. Sorry.

Oh well, that’s OK. I’m very lucky just to have that, I guess. Now that I’m free, I’m going to find myself a peanut cow, milk it myself. and make my own peanut butter. It was always a special treat back home, and we could never get nearly enough of it. But I’m going to make up for that now.

A peanut cow? What do you mean? How does that work? I’ve never heard of such a thing.

What do you mean how does that work? A cow made out of peanuts. What’s so hard to understand?

But how can a cow be made out of peanuts? Animals are a lot more complicated than that. Do you mean just a big model cow made out of peanuts?

No. That wouldn’t be any fun. It wouldn’t have any milk, for one thing. And it wouldn’t be able to follow me, walk across the fields with me, with a tinkling bell hanging from its neck. And it wouldn’t give me an endless supply of peanut milk, either.

What’s peanut milk, then? I’ve never heard of that, either. I don’t think peanut butter is made out of milk, I think it’s just made out of peanuts.

What guff you speak. I’m going to find myself a beautiful peanut cow with big brown round eyes, and that’s that. She will be devoted to me, and keep me in peanut milk till the end of my days. And I will be happy and contented. And she will graze on the long lush grass while I lie on the river bank at the edge of the paddock eating crunchy peanut butter as the hot sun warms us both. And the cheerful river burbles below me, of course.

You’re a bit of an impractical dreamer of a rat, aren’t you?

You’re a bit of an unimaginative, uber-practical mouse, aren’t you?

Too practical, am I? Unimaginative? Well I saved you, didn’t I? You weren’t looking too flash when I first found you, as I recall.

No, I’m sure I wasn’t. And I don’t mean to sound ungrateful. And I’m sorry if I sounded mean. It’s just that I’m determined to find myself a peanut cow, and I don’t like people trying to stop me from realising my dream.

Magnifico looked at Horatio, and decided to hold his tongue. There was so much he could say, but there would be plenty of time for that. Hopefully.

Why did you save me, by the way?
Stephen Whiteside, Australian Poet and Writer

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