Walking with the boy on my shoulders, he tells the story of a cat, an extraordinary cat named Bak. Bak, the cat, rode a horse named Smoo. But this was no ordinary horse.  Bak and Smoo would ride around the kingdom looking very proud and occasionally stopping to help folks in need.  Smoo would haul or pull heavy loads and Bak would give advice on a variety of subjects, he was quite well educated, and could even chase mice if called upon.

Well, such a cat and horse would be quite valuable if someone had the mind to kidnap them. It never occurred to Bak or Smoo, it did occur to Efram. He set about to steal Bak and use this smart cat for his personal gain. One day around sunset Bak and Smoo were rounding a bend in the trail through the forest. Just ahead Efram had set his trap. It was foolproof. He had devised a fence, a net, a noose, and a pit to trap and hold them both. This was necessary because he knew that as long as Bak was on Smoo’s back, he could get away. So by capturing both, he could get Bak, the extraordinary cat.

The stage was set so to speak and Efram’s plan seemed guaranteed to succeed. Smoo and Bak walked right into the trap and as planned everything went snap, zing, thrash, whop, and clink. Smoo and Bak were trapped. All seemed lost when Smoo suddenly started to quiver and shake. Then he started to bulge and grow. Then he changed colors. Within a few moments, Smoo had transformed into a fierce dragon. A dragon who could easily escape Efram’s trap. So Smoo, the horse turned dragon, with Bak still on his back climbed out of the trap and headed for home. Efram went mad trying to convince everyone that Smoo, a common horse, had turned into a dragon. No one would believe him. After all, a talking cat that owned a horse was enough to swallow.

(Bak is pronounced like bake. Smoo is pronounced like in the word smooth)

Note: This story was told to me by my inner child in a therapy session over 25 years ago. A second longer story also exists that I plan to make into a children’s book one day. The original drawing by a friend in Santa Fe.

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