Animal Magnetism: My Life with Creatures Great and Small

Animal Magnetism: My Life with Creatures Great and Small

Rita Mae Brown

Language: English

Pages: 256

ISBN: 0345511794

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Rita Mae Brown’s earliest memory is of the soothing purr of Mickey, her family’s long-haired tiger cat, who curled up and claimed a spot in her crib. From there, a steady parade of cats, dogs, horses, and all manner of two- and four-legged critters have walked, galloped, and flown into and through her world. In Animal Magnetism, the bestselling author shares the lessons she’s learned from these marvelous creatures as well as her deep appreciation for them.

Brown readily admits that she prefers the company of animals to people, a trait handed down from her mother. After all, Brown explains, “There’s no such thing as a dumb dog, but God knows there are continents filled with dumb humans.” In fact, by observing the dogs on her farm, the horses in her stables, and the cats that have helped her flesh out her many novels, Brown has gained better insight into herself and other human beings–one need only look at a chicken coop, she once realized, to see its striking similarity to her mother’s clucking and preening group of friends.

In hilarious and heartwarming stories, Brown introduces us to Franklin, a parrot with a wicked sense of humor; R.C., a courageous Doberman who defined loyalty and sacrifice; Suzie Q, the horse who taught her the meaning of hard work; Baby Jesus, a tough tiger cat from New York City with sharp teeth to match his attitude; and of course the beloved and prolific Sneaky Pie, who needs no introduction to her legions of fans. In her succinct and personable style, Brown also revisits the very human parts of her life–growing up in the segregated South, dealing with the pain and the loss of those dearest to her, and coming into her own as an adult and as a writer.

Every recollection here reveals nature’s delight and wonder–and offers solid evidence of the ability of animals to love. As funny as it is poignant, Animal Magnetism shows how these inspiring creatures, great and small, can bring out the best in us, restore us to our greater selves, and even save our lives.

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Miles? Conditioning and nutrition are critical. Teaching me gave PopPop a lift to his step. He wasn’t talkative. He’d tell me what I needed to know, like, “Buzz, cook until the meat falls off the bones. Dry the bones out. Save them, let them dry out, and then grind them up.” He’d pour into the gruel the ground bones from, say, last week’s cooking. “Use barley. Don’t use wheat. If you can get rice, that’s good, but we can’t get it here as easily as barley, which is all around. Put in this much.

Career, I’ve kept chickens. When I was quite small, I fed them. In our family, as soon as you could walk, you were taught to perform service. You didn’t work, you didn’t eat. It only took being sent to bed a couple of times without supper to end laziness. Pride grows when you see your chores help the family. Our chickens were Rhode Island Reds, Leghorns, and Plymouth Barred Rock. When I entered the pen they’d rush up to me. The cats reposed outside the pen, dreaming of the day when one, just.

Shore, thousands of silver coins darting and dashing under clear water as the sun turned everything from blood to red to scarlet, then pink and finally gold, so much gold. My parents fell in love with this small, quiet city of thirty thousand people that was laced with canals. And the following year, 1955, they announced that we were moving there. While I appreciated the beauty of the subtropics, all I wanted was hounds, horses, and farming. Dad inquired about foxhunting clubs. None. I couldn’t.

Lila Meeney’s dachshund, along with Diddy’s King Edward and Chaps, my Chesapeake Bay Retriever. He was four then. So many dogs. I loved it. As the decibel level increased, the dogs retreated, for the noise troubled them. What was causing such a ruckus? Turns out someone from Other Parts (not Virginia, not Maryland) stupidly tried to press Mary for the truth about her connection to the original Pocahontas. We all knew that the original Pocahontas, called “Poke” by Mother, had died in London and.

Anne Henderson, welcomes us each time, always acting as though we are doing her a favor by hunting her land when it is quite the reverse. Not for the fainthearted, Cherry Hill tests hounds, horses, and riders. The land around the house undulates, then quickly rises to the top of Turner Ridge, perhaps twelve hundred feet above the highest pasture. From the ridge you can look down and see the Upper James River, pastures hugging its banks, still in winter garb. Now that the bald eagles are back,.

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