Their joys are simple. A soft bed. A scrap fallen from the table that the younger dogs missed. The memory of a treed squirrel. A stormless night.
White whiskered faces and legs crooked as question marks.
Old Dogs…their sweet Buddha bellies hang over crossed legs as they fall asleep in a coveted patch of sun. Dreaming of out-racing their shadows down long, shady lanes.
Once they danced by your side. The very definition of joy unleashed. A perfect poem caught in shining eyes and wagging tails. They have followed you faithfully for years. And would plunge into fires, untamed wildernesses, raging waters if you asked.
Now, they struggle to catch up. Their pace slow but their hearts still valiant.
Their cloudy eyes are starting to dim and go distant, tuning in to some invisible world. Just beyond your reach.
Don’t go you say, as you scratch the tender part between their ears. Stay longer. I can’t imagine a world without your fur pressed close to my cheek. There are still so many roads we haven’t explored.
And they look up at you with a wisdom that just slays you.
Their backs are bent, not from the weight of years, but from the invisible wings they are growing
That will soon take them to a place where once more they are warriors of speed
Drunk with the sights and scents of a thousand meadows.
Able to leap high enough to touch the wing of the tiniest butterfly.
A place where they will now wait for you to catch up.
H/T Donna Swajeski