Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

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©Katherine Dunn.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Muddy and I walk on

There is no better day than the new day.

I've been wanting, planning, thinking about getting back to my walking regime which I had in Minneapolis, and fell out of it for way too long. Not that I wasn't physically active all these years, but not as aerobically as I need at 58. So Muddy and I began our new venture together-walking.

Not only is it good for my body, this is helping my soul. As I walked the road, people waved, I saw backyard glimpses of houses I'd only seen driving by in car. I noticed how many of those trees we'd been flying by were apples, birthing their fruits in the culverts. I made mental notes to come back. I found hawk feathers and wild turkey ones too. I passed some horses and got to know the road better so maybe I could take Boone that way in time. And we walked down to one of the many bays, and Muddy got to see the next best thing to the ocean.

Last night, Huck came to me. His face was right up close to my vision in the dream, and he simply looked at me, deeply. I felt he was saying,

I'm okay, now you be okay too.

I can't say that was the catalyst that finally made me go for a walk, but I was happy he came to me like that. He is okay. He got to whatever place he is supposed to be.

A friend sent me one of the most beautiful and moving poems I've read in a long time. I am sharing it because it is so appropriate and I hope soothing to any of you who lost a dog, or loved one of any species. I found it evocative and it captured everything about this loss. Thank you for all the messages too. Huck's soul stunned a lot of people, I realize now, even those that had only met him a couple times, or through his eyes in a photograph. While Mud is a completely different dog, I can say this-he tries. He tries to sit still and let me hug him close like Huck did, he tries to not wipe out wine glasses with his tail, he tries to show moderate enthusiasm for Mondays, or any other day of the week but he can't contain his enthusiasm because he is Muddy. He is not Huck and we will not project that on him.

He is beautiful, athletic, goofy, carefree, happy to be alive Monday-Sunday, frisbee addicted...Muddy.

The House Dog's Grave

I've changed my ways a little; I cannot now
Run with you in the evenings along the shore,
Except in a kind of dream; and you, if you dream a moment,
You see me there.

So leave awhile the paw-marks on the front door
Where I used to scratch to go out or in,
And you'd soon open; leave on the kitchen floor
The marks of my drinking-pan.

I cannot lie by your fire as I used to do
On the warm stone,
Nor at the foot of your bed; no, all the night through
I lie alone.

But your kind thought has laid me less than six feet
Outside your window where firelight so often plays,
And where you sit to read--and I fear often grieving for me--
Every night your lamplight lies on my place.

You, man and woman, live so long, it is hard
To think of you ever dying
A little dog would get tired, living so long.
I hope that when you are lying

Under the ground like me your lives will appear
As good and joyful as mine.
No, dear, that's too much hope: you are not so well cared for
As I have been.

And never have known the passionate undivided
Fidelities that I knew.
Your minds are perhaps too active, too many-sided. . . .
But to me you were true.

You were never masters, but friends. I was your friend.
I loved you well, and was loved. Deep love endures
To the end and far past the end. If this is my end,
I am not lonely. I am not afraid. I am still yours.

Robinson Jeffers, 1941


Joanne said...

Oh, my goodness, that was amazing - and so true. All my dear little folks are still with me, living always in my heart...

Cheryl Razmus said...

I have to go hug my cat now.

Terra said...

What a perfect poem. I read Robinson Jeffers' poems years ago. I am older than you and enjoy walking my neighborhood, just as you say. I get ideas for what flowers thrive, to plant in my own garden.

leighkidd said...

It not only brings back past losses but concern of my passing before her. Where will she go and how will she do? She is so bonded to me and I can't even do her justice by walking her now that I don't walk easily.
Time to re-think things.
I'm happy you are feathering and picking up treasures. I used to do that with my grandson and we talked about where they came from and what we could make with all of those tossed away little bits that were once vital to something.

Katherine Dunn/Apifera Farm said...

Thanks for stopping in everyone. I know, these losses bring up so much...But I know he's ok, and I believe your dogs are ok too.

Kerry O'Gorman said...

You are such a kindred spirit Katherine. I had a visit from Griffin so much like yours from Huck. He came to my bedside one early morning at 4 a.m when I could'nt sleep. His face right up to mine. His back body was like someone had dusted him with talcum powder but he WAS there. it was right before we moved and I told him how much I loved him and missed him and it was if he wanted to say "its o.k to move, I will be with you no matter where you are".
Thanks so much for this poem. Griffin is buried with his brother Franklin up at my friends house, near their fire pit over looking the ocean. I think we will make a headstone with this poem on it. xo

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Thank you for reading! The farm and my art/writing keep me hopping, so might not respond immediately. Thank you for understanding. ~Katherine & Apifera ~