The Patron Saint of Old Dogs

They should be allowed to lie in the sun
twitching in rabbit-chasing dreams,
to take sedate walks, barking at squirrels,
to scoff their meaty chunks too fast
to grow a little stout and slow, to howl
sometimes at the lonely moon.

Instead they sit up and beg my help
with new tricks: fresh ways to fetch
the mail, retrieve the files, roll over
for new masters, play dead (or harder
at times, play living), shake paws
with a future which careens towards
them like huskies pulling a sled,
balance balls on their noses, balance
the books, dance on their hind legs
and bark along to the music of time.

Maggie Butt
Old dogs

If you have any comments on this poem,  Maggie Butt would be pleased to hear them.

Illustration  by Fredrik Eden