12 December

Poem: Divine Old Dog At The Gate

by Jon Katz
Divine Old Dog
Divine Old Dog

The Divine Old Dog is restless tonight,

she circles and circles,

she licks at her paws,

she does not hear her name,

is confused and uncertain,

she is abashed at her accidents,

she tried to say,

but could not.

Are you at the gate,

great creature?,

are you proud, old girl,

tired of this

cold winter day, these human needs and dramas,

this winter world,

does

the cold makes your legs ache?

Divine Old Dogs accept the ways of the world,

the nature of life,

they come when they choose,

leave when they are ready,

they have all sorts of ways to tell

us,

when it is time, and they always decide,

never us. I ask and ask.

Who will guard my door, and keep the

fire and water away?

Who will be a fence,

that keeps the cold wind away?

I will bow to you,

and let you pass,

I celebrate you Divine Old Dog,

you are one of the great spirits,

you have lived a great life,

in faith and devotion.

You did it. You kept the men away,

and protected her day and night,

until she felt safe,

you faced the world with her,

and barked and growled it into submission,

you stood at the fence of life,

and kept the darkness away.

your work is soon finished here,

your spirit seeks home,

and rest

by the blue lights along the cool stream,

warm days and soft and endless pastures,

rabbits to chase to the horizon

We will walk you to the gate,

but not beyond. No bridge

for you to cross, do not wait for us there,

you are free,

find your angels and dance with them

in the night sky.

Divine Old Dog,  the spirits

ride with you, and howl with you

at the bright moon.

I will not mourn for you,

I will smile at your memory,

for yours is a life filled with joy

and meaning, a cause for nothing,

but celebration,

and gratitude.

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