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"I wrote this when our dog died, then put it away; and finding it again I thought I'd submit it, though I did not write it for such." - D G Moody

As I write I can look down to where,
on his bed next to me he lies curled
under his blanket, his nose uncovered,
and he is here, but he’s also not here.
Was it was only this morning that I carried
him out to the car, for his last journey to
the vets, where we had to decided that
he'd had enough, and could go to his rest.

For tonight, he will be with us in the house
and tomorrow, early, we’ll dig his grave,
and there will be words to say, about how
much he meant to us, by being with us for
the ten years we had him as a rescue dog.
And it was the taken-for-granted familiarity,
the routines we shared, the daily dog walks;

And the holidays we planned around him;
and how long we could leave him when out,
when he then became the third person,
who’s now departed; and as you said, it’s
like stepping off a cliff, without the sense
of a landing; and I see you being busy now:
sorting his things, the little tokens of his life,
and yes, I know, thousands are also dying,
in wars, famines, and yes also in abattoirs;

But this was one life that we shared together,
which does not subtract from the rest of it;
and aren’t we just animals, staring into night?
Our emotions will not change what happens
when faced with extinction; but if we can love
a dog, for just being a dog, then maybe it says
something about ourselves; and perhaps
that we are also loved for just being human,
and by giving some of that love to a dog
we are then ourselves more loved thereby.

                     © D G Moody 2023