He had given me time enough and then a bit more, the Snow Leopard awaiting his song. I searched my memory for what I knew of his kind and how I would convey it to him.He sat still, there on Dawn’s jungle floor, gray eyes on me, ears on me too as I began:
Solitary yet not calling himself lonely, the Snow Leopard wakes. Home is not the teaming, torrid jungles of Africa nor any of the warmer environs tigers may be use to. No, it is the cold, high mountains which call him forth, for here he feels himself truly content. The Great Asian Steppes, the snowy winter forests of Russia, and China, Nepal, Tibet. Those steep, dangerous, stony crags other big cats would never dare consider, is home to the silver and black thick-muscled Snow Leopard.
Do not bend your ear hoping for a mighty roar to avalanche the winter snows, for you will wait an eternity and still never hear more than a growl, a mew, a rumble or a wail sent forth from his throat. He cares not to advertise his whereabouts and does not seek out the company of others, not even his own kind. Unless she is mother to her cubs, high in some rock sheltered den, waiting for the right time to share the lessons of splayed foot and powerful tail balance, and of stealth, of silent leaps in trackless snows high above the heads of all but the mightiest birds which soar on the thermals ever watchful of her displayed finesse.
No, do not call him lonely, for his solitude is as finely ingrained into his being as his gray or sometimes green eyes are. Eyes which have sighed themselves closed and to sleep as I finish his song and he perchance dreams of thirty-foot leaps across windy chasms, giving chase to elusive and fleet-footed mountain goats through the blinding snows.