For my aging dog

You sigh, as it gets dark,
from that spot on your bed.

Pretending to sleep,
but I say your name
and that tail wags.

We love our long walks. You play.
You push past the others to catch your ball.
You climb the rocks at the beach.
Muscles strong. Senses alert.
You launch yourself to the sea.

You also limp home, sometimes.

On hikes, you crash up mountains.
You grab branches in your mouth.
You do not lose track of me.

But I see you steady yourself
before jumping into the car.

My graying, aging dog.

Not old. Not young.

We jog. You set the pace (always have).
But now I’m the one slowing for you.
That’s OK. You did the same for me.
You’re such a good dog, Ace.

We don’t play much fetch. It makes you sore.
We race. You let me win.

We joke around a lot, don’t we? Lots of tricks.
We go camping. We sing duets.
We go to coffee shops. You lie at my feet.
Big, brown eyes watching.

Every day, five or six times, I kiss that low spot between your eyes.
Rub your soft ears.
See the gray fur on your legs, your feet, tip of that tail.

To my aging dog.

Not old. Not young.

You’re such a good boy.
You look up at me. Those brown eyes staring.

You have big plans.

“What should we do today?”

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18 Readers Commented

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  1. vanessa on February 17, 2014

    Beautiful words! So well-put.

  2. Beth Scott on February 17, 2014

    Lindsay: Love the poem. I have an 8 year old black lab mix who looks quite a bit like your dog, Ace. You could not have expressed my feelings more perfectly.! Love it! So well said!

    Beth

  3. nancyspoint on February 17, 2014

    Aw… this made me all teary-eyed. Ace is such a good boy and this poem is just perfect.

  4. Christie on February 17, 2014

    So thoughtful, Lindsay!

  5. Julia at Home on 129 Acres on February 17, 2014

    What a lovely post. I can see that you have a very special relationship.

  6. Pasty on February 17, 2014

    Beautiful post!

  7. slimdoggy on February 17, 2014

    Sweet poem…going to have to hang onto that as my Jack and Maggie age…10 going on 11 now.

  8. Lenya Wilson on February 17, 2014

    This was beautiful. Thank you for sharing

  9. Emma on February 18, 2014

    That is beautiful and what a great idea. My mom says it fits her and my senior sis Katie. Well done!

  10. Ruckus the Eskie on February 18, 2014

    What should we do today?!

  11. Michelle on February 18, 2014

    Lindsay – That is so well done and just lovely. Your words, descriptions and emotions really resonated with me. Give Ace a pat for me. I know my guys miss you!

  12. Rebekah on February 18, 2014

    This made me cry! So sweet. He waited for you, now you slow down for him.

  13. Dawn on February 19, 2014

    What a sweet tribute. Sometimes it is hard seeing them age.

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