the black rabbit

“ ‘Look how they love the otter Yorokobi,’ said Shiro to the black rabbit. ‘If I am the best, they will love me.’ ”

-The Black Rabbit

I have always thought of rabbits as competitive (perhaps because of The Tortoise and The Hare). In the fable I’m working on right now, Shiro the white rabbit is always on the lookout for a chance to be the best.

I love this painted scroll, the Choju-jinbatsu-giga (“Animal-person caricatures”), from 12th-centry Kyoto. Credited by some as the first manga, it shows a wrestling match between a rabbit and a frog.

I’ll be posting The Black Rabbit sometime in March.

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