Beau has been gone for many years now, but I still cry when I read this poem. I often think I should take it off the website, but every time I do, someone writes to tell me about their own dog and how much it meant to them to read the tribute, so I leave it.
Good-Bye, Good Dog. May 1, 2006.
Today at the rib shack I asked for a doggie bag
then remembered you weren’t here.
You didn’t come to meet me in the drive.
When I open the door, I prepare to step over you -
but the space is empty.
I sit in the old rocker at the pond,
peeking to make sure I’m not on your tail.
Or your paw. It’s no longer a worry.
I wait for you to push your sweet face
up from underneath my elbow, wait
to stroke your muzzle -
to send a pretend "smooch" your way.
But you are gone.
I will think of you this summer
when the thunder comes. I’ll probably
listen for your bark: Let me in!!
Today, I need to clean your noseprints off the glass.
But I’m not ready yet.
I should clean the long red hair from the mats.
But I won’t. Not yet.
But I filled up the cavernous hole you dug
at the back of the house.
I wish I could fill up the cavernous hole
you left in my heart.
Good dog, Beau. Good, good dog.
This poem is copyrighted and is not available for copy or print or publication in any form without my written permission. TP