Bob had been a lonely man ever since
His wife of fifty years had passed.
“Lord, let me join her.” he would pray.
“Let this day be my last.”
Each day, he went to the cemetery,
Just a short walk down the street.
After their talk, he would water her flowers
And hear passers-by whisper, “How sweet.”
One gray and misty morning,
He had hoped for sunnier skies
To plant fall bloomers at her graveside;
But there, to his surprise…
Stood an old dog beside her stone;
Thin and dirty, but he struck a handsome pose.
He whined as Bob approached, as if to say,
“I could use a friend, you know.”
He sat calmly as Bob planted flowers,
Carefully sniffing each one Bob put in place.
After the last one was planted, he sniffed it;
Then turned and licked Bob’s face.
Bob smiled. “I had a dog when I was young…
Pal…he was a mighty good one too.
So, if you don’t mind old fella,
That’s what I’ll call you.”
Pal may have been an old dog,
But he was smart and handsome in his way;
So they made a deal, Bob would give him a meal
And a bath, if he decided to stay.
Pal loved his bath, then rolled in the grass.
He slept on a blanket in the den.
In the night, he dragged it next to Bob’s bed.
He intended to be Bob’s best friend.
Pal was such a good dog, housebroken too;
Never made a mess or got in trouble.
He knew about newspapers, slippers and Frisbees;
And when Bob called, he‘d come on the double.
Yes, Pal gave Bob’s life new purpose.
A special bond of friendship was cast.
And never again did Bob pray,
“Lord, let this day be my last.”
For twelve years, the very best of friends,
Together night and day;
And so it was, until one evening,
Pal quietly passed away.
Bob held Pal in his arms and wept.
“Oh, Pal…my best friend…you saved my life.”
He caressed Pal as he reminisced;
Then, sometime in the night, Bob joined his wife.
The next morning, an old woman,
Tears welling in her sad and lonely eyes,
Brought fresh flowers to her husband’s grave;
But there, to her surprise….
Stood an old dog beside the stone,
Thin an dirty, but he struck a handsome pose.
He whined as she approached, as if to say,
“I could use a friend, you know.”
He sat calmly as she took old flowers
And put fresh ones in their place.
He carefully sniffed the fresh ones,
Then, turned and licked her face.
She smiled through her tears.
“I had a dog when I was young...
A good one too. His name was Pal.”
Copyright © Robert Candler | Year Posted 2014
Watch and listen carefully.
There, do you hear the stirring?
Wander over and move the bracken
see the hedgehog scurry away,
now fat and sleepy
Tall pines are waving
as the gentle breeze blows
branches are dancing
Aromatic scent of their wood
floods the valley, everything
smelling so fresh from the tang.
Birds sing out in happiness
perching high up in the canopy.
The mighty oak who's
heavily laden acorns
crash down to the ground
Squirrels quickly gather them up
to store for winter hiding them
in hollow trunks and small cracks.
Then tuck themselves up
in their dreys to hibernate
Horse chestnut ripens
swelling up in fruition
kernels taste so sweet
Now the hot chestnut sellers
stand by their braziers
toasting the nuts
passing them out in
brown paper bags,
watch the child tossing one
from hand to hand
impatient for them to cool
Ash stately stands guard
over the silent churchyard
no trespassing here
Well tended graves
nestle under its canopy
crosses and angels standing watch too,
a quiet place to come and reflect.
Yew so poisonous
keeps the animals at bay
protecting the graves
Copyright © Shadow Hamilton | Year Posted 2013