Wednesday, June 13

The whole wide world pours down

You will never be alone, you hear so deep
a sound when autumn comes...
... you never heard so deep a sound,
moss on rock, and years. You turn your head --
that's what the silence meant: you're not alone.
The whole wide world pours down.

-- Excerpt from Assurance by William Stafford


To everyone who has been asking about Sam, our 18-year old flatcoated retriever, I wanted to fill you in:

Sam is still going as strong as an old guy can ... he takes two walks each day. He beams at us, silently -- so perfectly communicating to us what he wants or needs, how much he loves, how he feels .... where he wants to be. He has slowed down markedly, yet I am still in awe of his age, his energy, his devotion, his enthusiasm for life.

I also wanted to share photo of Sam doing what he does best: dreaming, sleeping, wandering around in the forest of his heart ... in a state of silence (he is deaf now) and peaceful existence.

One day melts into another day, like a dream. I believe in his heart Sam remembers days when he could chase rabbits and almost catch them. Days when he could scout ahead of us on the trail -- far ahead -- and never have to pause to catch his breath or pretend to find a smell because he could not go on... days when he could leap effortlessly from a river bank, find the stick in cold deep water, and with perfect movement bring it back to shore

... memories like filtered sunlight falling all around him. The whole wide world pours down, like light, like leaves, like dreams, like love.


kerrdeLune (cate) said...

Good for you, and three cheers for Sam!!!

I'm happy that he is there and still going along with you. You have both been in my thoughts as I walk my German Shortair Pointer Cassie early in the morning these days. She is an elderly girl now, and she can't take the heat so we are out and about at sunrise and then much later after the sun goes down. Like Sam, Little Brown Girl is the finest of pottering companions, and I can't picture pottering without her.

kerrdeLune (cate) said...

.. and i also wanted to say that I loved this post. Sam is a very special person, so are you, and so is my Cassie. Thank you for this lovely post.

maureen said...

Cate, I'm glad you are one of the humans who understand how completely part of our families our canine companions can be. Are. Cassie is a lucky girl because you "get" her -- and you go out of your way to walk her in the cool of the day ... best time of day to be out anyway, whether you are a dog or a human. Thank you also for your comment. I really appreciate it. I can't picture pottering without Sam either.

Tammy said...

Sam looks so much like Manny I can't help but smile when I stop by. Give him a hug for me. :)

Maya's Granny said...

For many years our family had a black retriever/St. Bernard mix (who looked all retriever except for her sway back) named Sam. She was a joy to us and we miss her yet, all these 20 years later. She brought an uncritical love to the all of us when we didn't feel as loved by people as we wished we were. How lucky we are that dogs so love and accept us.

pepektheassassin said...

I love this post, too. I agree with cate--you and Sam are both very special persons!

carletongardener said...

A beautiful post.

maureen said...

Tammy, I just now gave Sam a bunch of hugs -- one of those was most definitely from you. I know you miss Manny and I'm glad seeing Sam on my blog gives you a smile.

maya's granny, i will probably miss Sam 20 years after he leaves us, if i'm still around then. I understand the feeling you describe; that total acceptance of us, no matter what. sometimes it almost feels as if my heart will crack open when i realize what an amazing companion our sam has been -- still is. Do you still have a dog in your life?

carletongardener by now you have probably found the trail of comments i left on your beautiful (beautiful!!) garden photos. I've enjoyed looking at and being inspired by your garden as I had my morning cup of coffee. Thank you so much for your comment -- through this comment i have discovered a fellow gardener, someone i can tell , will teach me alot about vegetable gardening. i like your photos alot. And thanks for the post about Sam in your (oops - I mean Skippy's) blog today. :o}