Hazel and the Mouse
Sun 18th Dec 2011 at 18:57:24
Box canvas 16x20“ (40x50 cm)

A peaceful evening in August on Watership, Hazel meets again the mouse he saved from the kestrel and he stops to have a chat, ignoring Bigwig who wants to talk to him.
Wise move! Hazel finds out from the mouse of rumours, strangers on the Down and his instinct tells him to find out more about it straight away. This chat with the mouse proves crucial as it prevents a surprise attack on the warren by the Efrafans, hiding in the combe on the morning side.
Alongside with Kehaar friendship, another proof of the importance of Hazel strategic policy: being friendly to the other creatures of the Down can only turn to their advantage

Part 4 Hazel-rah
From Chapter 42: News at Sunset

By kind permission of Richard Adams

…Hazel - who wanted to see how Boxwood and Speedwell were getting on with a hole they were digging - went with Dandelion along the foot of the bank. He was just going down the new hole when he noticed that some small creature was pattering about in the grass. It was the mouse that he had saved from the kestrel. Pleased to see that he was still safe and sound, Hazel turned back to have a word with him. The mouse recognized him and sat up, washing his face with his front paws and chattering effusively…

…Going close to the mouse, he bent his head and spoke quietly and firmly.
“You’ve often said you’re our friend,” he said. “If you are, tell me, and don’t be afraid, what you know about other rabbits coming.”
The mouse looked confused. Then he said, “I not see other rabbits, sir, but a my brother ’e say yellowhammer say is a new rabbits, plenty, plenty rabbits, come to combe over on a morning side. Maybe is a lots a rubbish. I tell you a wrong, you no like a mouse for more, not a friend a more.”
“No, that’s all right,” said Hazel. “Don’t worry. Just tell me again. Where did the bird say these new rabbits were?”
“’E say is a come just a now on a morning side. I not a see.”
“Good fellow,” said Hazel. “That’s very helpful.”…

- Aldo Galli -