They will always live on in our hearts and minds.
I follow the blog belas bright ideas.
Recently, she posted a beautiful poem to commemorate the nine years of having Susami in their lives. It is republished here with Bela’s kind permission.
There is a presence, here
and now; the bellows of breath,
warmth of blood, the feeling,
even if imagined,
that we are connected, one
to the other.
We each have our memories,
Your passing removes that utterly,
and somehow the same hand
lying on the same fur and flesh
will sense void, not even spirit,
not even that.
One can forgive the athiest,
or even theist their doubts,
props, religions. For this
at least is real:
This. Here. Now.
Tomorrow it will be gone.
And no matter in visions I linger
in the numinous; despite
in the garden I witness the alchemy
of decay transforming
into green and vibrant,
the loss of a loving companion
is egregious, indeed.
Bela explained how Susami came to them:
This sweet being has been with us only nine years, since she was about 10-12 weeks old. Her previous steward, a multiply-pierced and -tattooed young woman, had to find a home for her. We were on our way to the east coast to deal with some business, and I had taken our good friend Kevin with me to the local feed store to get the horse stocked up on alfalfa pellets (it was during a long drought). I saw the pup with a bandage on her leg before, and asked the gal what was wrong with her. I later learned from the store owner (who thanked me many, many times for giving Susami a good home) that the dog had been severely abused. (She never did tell me specifics, so I was left to wonder.) The young woman tried her best, but there were forces beyond her control in her environment. When I saw Susami again, we had to take her, but how? I asked Kev if he would watch yet one more animal for us while we were gone, and he happily agreed! So she joined our chocolate Lab who we brought with us to Hawaii from northern Maine (a Non-rescue). He was Thrilled to have that little creature’s companionship.
Going to close with the exquisite words from Suzanne Clothier that Dr. Jim Goodbrod used in the foreword to my book:
There is a cycle of love and death that shapes the lives of those who choose to travel in the company of animals. It is a cycle unlike any other. To those who have never lived through its turnings or walked its rocky path, our willingness to give our hearts with full knowledge that they will be broken seems incomprehensible. Only we know how small a price we pay for what we receive. Our grief, no matter how powerful it may be, is an insufficient measure of the joy we have been given.
(Suzanne Clothier: Bones Would Rain from the Sky: Deepening Our Relationships with Dogs.)
Suzanne’s words cannot be bettered when it comes to the death of a beloved dog.
Susami, you will not be forgotten.