Why I Don’t Shovel All the Snow

Sometimes I still feel her presence,

Riding behind me in the back seat of the truck

Like she used to.

When her back legs got weak and she couldn’t walk very far

She rode in the truck behind me

And looked out the window,

Feeling the breeze, inhaling the smells.

She was a Bernese Mountain Dog

Beautiful, majestic

Too big for me to carry

As she had carried me through so much of life.

I knew she would leave her failing body soon.

So we went for rides

With the windows open

and enjoyed each other’s company,

using all of our senses,

longing to hold on to that feeling


When it was time to let her go,

God sent a blizzard

for she loved the snow.

She stayed out on the deck all day

Turning white like the ghost she would become

Lying in her patch of snow

Loving it.

When we let her go

Her spirit took flight

And Rusty jumped straight up in the air, startled

Putting an exclamation point on her exit,

leaving no doubt that she had gone.

For a while

I found clumps of her black hair

in corners of the house

But I didn’t want to vacuum up

this part of her.

That is why I don’t shovel all the snow

I leave a patch in the middle of the deck

Where she used to be

And I imagine her there yet, enjoying the day.

Sometimes I still feel her presence,

riding behind me in the back seat of the truck

Like she used to

I look over my shoulder and I don’t see her

But I know she is still there.


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