Friday, December 01, 2006

Biscuit

Biscuit
June 26, 1989 - December 1, 2005


A year ago today I lost a friend that I had for sixteen years. Biscuit was endearing, infuriating, loving, loyal, disobedient but always constant and he changed my life during his stay with me. He is buried at the edge of the woods with his friend Blue, the cat, who died two days after he did at the age of 18. You are missed my friend.

A Dog Has Died - Pablo Neruda

My dog has died.
I buried him in the garden
next to a rusted old machine.

Some day I'll join him right there,
but now he's gone with his shaggy coat,
his bad manners and his cold nose,
and I, the materialist, who never believed
in any promised heaven in the sky
for any human being,
I believe in a heaven I'll never enter.
Yes, I believe in a heaven for all dogdom
where my dog waits for my arrival
waving his fan-like tail in friendship.

Ai, I'll not speak of sadness here on earth,
of having lost a companion
who was never servile.
His friendship for me, like that of a porcupine
withholding its authority,
was the friendship of a star, aloof,
with no more intimacy than was called for,
with no exaggerations:
he never climbed all over my clothes
filling me full of his hair or his mange,
he never rubbed up against my knee
like other dogs obsessed with sex.

No, my dog used to gaze at me,
paying me the attention I need,
the attention required
to make a vain person like me understand
that, being a dog, he was wasting time,
but, with those eyes so much purer than mine,
he'd keep on gazing at me
with a look that reserved for me alone
all his sweet and shaggy life,
always near me, never troubling me,
and asking nothing.

Ai, how many times have I envied his tail
as we walked together on the shores of the sea
in the lonely winter of Isla Negra
where the wintering birds filled the sky
and my hairy dog was jumping about
full of the voltage of the sea's movement:
my wandering dog, sniffing away
with his golden tail held high,
face to face with the ocean's spray.

Joyful, joyful, joyful,
as only dogs know how to be happy
with only the autonomy
of their shameless spirit.

There are no good-byes for my dog who has died,
and we don't now and never did lie to each other.

So now he's gone and I buried him,
and that's all there is to it.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

These creatures worm their way into our hearts and the loss of them is as great as losing any member of the family. Hugs Jeanette! I know what this feels like.

Jeanette Jobson said...

Thanks Anita. Animals do become special, don't they?

dd said...

What a beautiful animal he is.

sandy

MrsSnowy said...

I had a lump in my throat when I saw this post the other day. I couldn't find the appropriate words of comfort then or now. Such a beautiful dog. I'm so sorry you lost him.