Wednesday, 3 February 2016


Once upon a time there was a rabbit called Mars who lived in the lovely green fields that lie to the south of the great city of Belfast . Mars was an old rabbit and like all old rabbits his fur had begun to turn grey especially around his ears and on the top of his head. But he was a lively rabbit and showed no sign of his age. He ran in and out of his burrow at great speeds and if you watched him negotiate the fields you be struck at his jumping powers. He could jump as high as most younger rabbits. In fact he liked to boast that he was "an older, younger, rabbit".


Mars, in the earlier part of his life, had been, as they say, "unlucky in love". On the one hand that made him sad - but on the other hand he had made a definite decision many years ago that "better late than never" so mentally, emotionally and physically he had never given up hope of finding the rabbit of his dreams. Like many of those who never stopped dreaming he found one day that his dream had come true. He spotted and fell in love with a beautiful lady rabbit some years younger than himself. Her name was Duffy.


Being a bachelor rabbit he had lived in a bachelor burrow. It was not the most comfortable and beautiful of burrows but it was a fine burrow on a hill overlooking the flowing hills. Initially Mars invited Duffy to visit him in his burrow. Duffy liked Mars and his burrow and started to put the female touch to the burrow which pleased Mars greatly. Eventually Duffy started staying over the odd night and this made Mars even more happy. 

Some of Mars neighbouring rabbits, who were set in their ways, did not appreciate the arrival of Duffy. They complained about Duffy's presence to each other and they even went as far as complaining about Mars and Duffy to the County Down Senior Rabbit - a rabbit called Breenie.


But Breenie was a very self centred Senior Rabbit and did not care what the rabbits in his area did as long as it did not cause him any personal grief or trouble. So Breenie never even mentioned Duffy to Mars.

Spurred on by Breenie turning the myxomatosis eye to the situation Mars was emboldened and suggested to Duffy that she move in permanently with him and into his burrow and let out her own burrow to some other rabbit. In this way both Mars and Duffy would have all the pleasures and privileges of a shared burrow life and also have extra income to finance their new and special life together.

Of course neighbouring and far away rabbits continued to complain about this situation but Mars and Duffy just ignored them and got on with their new life together. As Mars said to Duffy: "There's only one thing worse than being talked about and that's not been talked about".  

At this stage one cannot say that Mars and Duffy lived happily ever after. But one can say that to date no one has upset Mars and Duffy's apple (or carrot) cart. 

We will keep you updated on the ongoing saga of Mars, Duffy and their many friends :-) 


  1. Dear Pat, I was very moved by the story of Mars and Duffy. They sound like quite a pair!

    I hope that you will treat us to more stories about the various colourful rabbits that abound in our surroundings in Counties Antrim and Down.

    I would be particularly interested in stories concerning our Pink Rabbits.

    PP D&C

    1. Dear Father, I am glad you liked the sweet story of Mars and Duffy.

      Indeed I have many more stories to share - and many about the Pinkies.

      But of course I must not write too often about rabbits as my non rabbit readers feel in the dark.

  2. And so would I !!

  3. What a lovely story; it reminds me of 'Watership Down'.
    This story could be called " How Mars carryd Duffy to his big rabbit home in Co Down".
    Even elderly rabbits deserve a little companionship, in their twilight years.
    Mars I hear likes to write some rabbit sonnets, and perhaps now he can read them aloud to Duffy.
    Breenie, the head rabbit is not a fan of lady rabbits living with his "special" male rabbits. Breenie's burrow is much bigger and warmer than other burrows, and last year he spent many rabbit pounds (£) renovating his existing burrow, including very big gates to keep bad rabbits out.
    Breenie sometimes visits other head rabbits including a Rabbit State called NACITAV, which has a leader called Bianco, who has a shiny white fur coat. In NACITAV they speak a unique language, called NITAL, and use an incense smelling smoke, when they wish to say prayers. ( They often feel so close to the Rabbit God, that they only pray when people pay them to)


    1. Dear Lux,

      Thank you for your very enlightening expansiveness on the Story of the Three Rabbits.

      I had heard that Mars was a poet. In fact a Blog reader sent me one of his latest which he read to Duffy on Burns Night:

      "O my love is like a big white doe,
      That blooms in every weather;
      O my love is like the morning hymn.
      That makes my heart a feather.

      As fair art though my bonnie lass,
      So deep in luve am I;
      And I will love thee still my dear.
      Till chalices runneth dry.

      Till chalices runneth dry my dear,
      And Peter's rock does melt;
      And I will love thee still my dear,
      In spite of blows I'm dealt.

      And fare-thee-weel,my only Luve,
      And fare-thee-weel, a while!
      And I will cum again my Luve,
      Tho' twere ten thousand mile!

  4. How can I identify Breenie's special male rabbits such as Mars ? Do they have particular markings on their fur ? How do they earn rabbit money to live by ?
    Does Breenie decide which burrows his special male rabbits live in ?
    How does a special rabbit become a head rabbit like Breenie ?
    Who is the this head rabbit called Brun,who was sent from NACITAV a few years ago to this land called Hibernia, by the Supreme Head Rabbit (Bianco) with the shiny white fur ?
    What does Brun do in Hibernia ? Someone told me he sends letters to NACITAV, which are read by special friends of Bianco who have red marks on their black fur.
    ( Bianco used to have to have jet black fur, but since coming to live in NACITAV his fur turned as white as snow.)
    ( Bianco knows there are some very bad rabbits in NACITAV, and he wants to send them away ! )


    1. Is that why Breenie sent Buggie Rabit to Britannia recently?

      Was it because Buggie Rabbit and Niger did their mess all over Breenie's chair (cathedra) that he is shown seated in above?

      Maybe Breenie thinks that as long as he does not mess in his pen then it will not have anything to do with him?

      Does Breenie not feel any responsibility for any harm that might come to little Bunnies in Britannia?

      Breenie must be a hard, cynical old buck !!!

      One Very Disillusioned Buck

    2. Is it true that a rabbit called Angel who used to sort out Mars' carrots for him and who took exception to the presence of Duffy recently received permission from Breenie to vacate the burrow in question and now stays in a hatch near a local hall?

      Was this fair to Angel and to all the other concerned local rabbits?

      Has it caused "admiratio" among the rabbit community?

      Priest of D&C

  5. Why are there only male special rabbits living in the State called NACITAV ? Is this not a strange situation ?
    Why are there no female special rabbits ? Do they have smaller brains ?
    Do the male special rabbits not feel lonely ?


  6. Dear Obscurato, What very pertinent questions.

    There are female rabbits in the vicinity of the special male rabbits but they are only allowed to perform certain functions - like prepare the special male rabbits carrots.

    However they are not allowed any power and strictly speaking are forbidden to chew on the special male rabbits carrots.

    In fairness - in Duffy's case she seems to have been granted some very unusual leeway.

  7. Buckley have you lost the plot completely? What the feck is all this about rabbits? I know our Holy Father Francis said "we Catholics breed like rabbits, eh?" but I have no idea what you are on about.

    1. Did Francis say that?

      I thought the papal rule was only that we were not allowed to use condoments on our carrots?

    2. MournemanMichael3 February 2016 at 22:45

      I think the plot Pat cultivates grows a tasty form of broccoli, genus: 'allegorical satire'
      I'm sure it flourishes on a regular supply of D&C manure for it seems there's plenty flying round.
      And I'm told there's a whole can of worms ready to crawl out of the muck!

  8. Thank you for clarifying some of these points. The world of the male special rabbits is a very difficult one to understand ; Breenie must be very wise to oversee this unique land, and its complicated relationships.
    Is it true Breenie gets expensive carrot wine delivered to his burrow ?


    1. Obscurato, I have no paper trail to prove this on but I am told that Breenie gets his expensive carrot wine from a well known hatchery in he County Down area.

      A very elderly "passionite" doe not far from where I live told me that the favoured carrot wine for daily consumption costs about Euro 75? She based this on a special order she was once asked to make.

  9. I thought that Breenie as the Head rabbit in this area had to live a very simple life, in order to give good example to the male special rabbits.
    Bianco, the Supreme Rabbit who lives in NACITAV, lives in a very simple burrow, even though he could live in a huge and very comfortable burrow. Does Breenie not want to live like Bianco ?


    1. Are you kiddin?

      Bianco takes the Jesus story seriously.

      Breenie and most of the others dont. Its just their ticket to party!

  10. Does Breenie not feel embarrassed when he looks around his luxurious burrow, and thinks about Bianco in his simple 2 room burrow in NACITAV, with a shared kitchen downstairs ?
    I heard last year that Breenie was very sad when the Supreme Rabbit appointed a new Head Rabbit in a nice area called ' Ard Mhaca', which Breenie had hoped to go to.
    Other people have told me that Breenie likes his big burrow because he feels safe behind the high fences and big gates.


    1. Any truth in the assertion that the Head Rabbit in AM has a limp paw or two?

  11. This now confirms that you are mad.

    1. On one occasion, at a clergy meeting, with John Vianney present, one of the cynical priests stood up and said to the bishop:"Father Vianney is mad".

      The old bishop was silent for a few moments and then said: "I wish the rest of my priests were half as mad".

  12. Why do I feel this is not really about Rabbits. Still Spring is in the air and the days are lengthening. The cycle of nature renews once more

  13. Not only is Spring in the air Sean but I'm told that way out the Saintfield Road, way beyond the Ivanhoe , that love is in the air!! What a lovely thought. Pluto must be aligned with Mars

  14. I can confirm this blog is NOT about rabbits.
    There may be some truth in the thought that this blog is about relationship issues within the Clergy of Down & Connor.
    Remember when Jesus spoke of the sower& the seed, he was actually speaking about the Word of God finding fertile soil, ie open human hearts.


    1. Lux, How can you confirm this. You are not the blog author !

  15. Is this not the time of year when Breenie as Head rabbit in this district, goes to smaller areas to say special prayers with little rabbits ?
    I hear that he does not like this work because it means he has to leave his lovely big warm burrow, and go to ordinary burrows.
    After the special prayers with the little rabbits, he sometimes has carrot nibbles in the burrow of the male special rabbit living in that area.The female rabbits prepare and serve the nibbles but do not join the table with the male special rabbits. I sometimes wonder why this is, but everyone says it has always been like this.
    Often the carrot wine served is not as good as Breenie's own wine,and this makes him a little grumpy.


  16. I am amazed that anyone with any acquaintance with Biblical literature would have difficulty with understanding the parable of the rabbits. I mean, I've never been to the place, don't know anyone involved, but it's meaning is clear as a bell. Obviously the rabbits haven't been properly explaining their big book of stories!