The Lady and the Gator

Cast Bronze, 2006
12" x 24" x 20"

You know dem gators an' crocs, right from de get-go are creatures with bad temperaments. Right out' dey eggs, dey justa snappin' at everything. The onliest sad part o' dere lives is dat outta all dem eggs a-bustin' open, only a few of 'em grow up to be big gators.

Now dis here gal, I think her name Lizzie Tolliver, she always wanted to be a vet'rinarian or a doctor. She decided to rescue one of dese t'ings and raise him as her own. Somehow, she saw the upturned corner of his mouth as a smile. When she went to pick him up, his mouf chomped down on her finger. Since it did not break the skin, she saw this as another sign of friendly acceptance.

Well, she took him home, fed him and nursed him and in no time, he grew into this big greenish-black monster--15 feet from nose to tip of his tail. Lawd have mercy, that t'ing was big lak a whale. Her fondness and protection of him was the gossip of folks from far and near. It was quite a strange alliance, for she never was interested in any human suitor.

One fine day during the summer, they jus' up and disappeared. The sheriffs and all de policemen's traced they tracks along the riverbank, and finally into the water. Even to dis day, that ole river never coughed 'em up. They jus' seemed to vanish into another kinda world.

Some say it was a suicide pact. Others say it was some kinda voodoo she was practicin'. Or maybe their strange relationship was not so strange after all, and the gator jus' went back to being a gator.