Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Passing On

TopDirtyDog and TWAPilot will say goodbye to a wonderful dog this week. Buddy has reached the time when it is too painful for him to do anything. Buddy is one of the lucky dogs that found a home with people who made him part of the family. Buddy is a “yellow dog” that is the paragon of a good dog and of a loyal dog. He’s gentle and kind. He’s just old and falling apart now.

As I was musing on this last night I thought how differently Phill and I had it when Kodiak got precipitously ill in May 2004. In five hours Kodi had gone from chasing squirrels in the yard to panting and not able to walk. When an ultrasound revealed numerous tumors in his spleen and liver our decision was easy. Relieving his suffering was the most loving decision for us. When Molly, our extremely old Golden, gets to the always painful stage, we’ll not have a difficult time helping her pass to the other side. She was in such misery when we found her and has experienced such a good life with us since then. We don’t want her to face that type of pain again. She’s much too sweet and loving.

When I think of death two poems come to mind. Here is the first.

Death, Be Not Proud

By John Donne

Death, be not proud, though some have call├Ęd thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou are not so;
For those whom thou think’st thou dost overthrow
Die not, poor Death; nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleep, which but they pictures be,
Much pleasure; then from thee much more must flow;
And soonest our best men with thee do go—
Rest of their bones and souls’ delivery!
Thou’rt slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell;
And poppy or charms can make us sleep as well
And better than thy stroke. Why swell’st thou then?
One short sleep past, we wake eternally,
And Death shall be no more: Death, thou shalt die.

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