Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Together Under the Willow

The old dog’s out under the willow tree
They said.
The two women led me there.
I knelt down to stroke his fur.
I supposed he knew why I was there.
Turning to ask the women a question
they were gone.
I was scared.
How could I go ahead and inject the drug
that would end the pain
by myself.
I wanted the women back
To help me do this.
Help me hold the dog
so I could do the deed.

Turning back to the dog
I was startled to see that
He was holding out his leg to me.
The eyes said I’m ready just do it.
Applying the tourniquet, I found the vein easily.
Viscous pink fluid squeezed in.
The eyes closed and
body relaxed after so much pain.

Together under the willow for a while
A breeze fluffed up from somewhere.
Tickling it’s way through his fur,
the branches,
and my hair.

Me and the tree and the dog
were all connected at that moment,
I knew where the breeze had come from.
Life was different for me after that.


gartenfische said...

Wow. Amazing.

Thank you so much for sharing this.

poodledoc said...

While I don't "like" euthanasia (who would?), I have had some very powerful experiences. During the very brief moment between being alive and death, some sort of energy gets liberated. A soul? I don't know.

Suzy said...

Amazing poem, amazing story.

I was finishing a book this morning that took place on a farm. The protagonist was helping a sheep deliver twin lambs, and it was described thus: "It was all of such elemental simplicity, so close to the border between life and death.

Those are holy times.