High Country Dogs

I’ll See You On the Trail

Dog on a snowy mountain for training

“It came to me that every time I lose a dog they take a piece of myheart with them. And every new dog whocomes into my life, gifts me with a piece of their heart. If I livelong enough, all the components of my heart will be dog, and I will become as generous and loving as theyare.”—Unknown Author

John Thomson of SkijorNow has graciously allowed us to postthis poem on our website.I have dedicatedthis to Neewa, our pointer who started it all, and to all dogs who give their humans companionship be it onthe trail, on the couch or both.

I’ll See You on the Trail by Matt Haakenstad and John Thompson of SkijorNow

I remember when I brought you home, the world amazed you so
We’d play for hours, you’d chew and run, more energy than I will ever know.
Not yet wise, but eager? Always! And ready for LET’S GO!
Let’s go meet the trail!

At 3 years old you pulled with force yet heeded my command,
Up and down the hills all day; you’d whine for more…I could barely stand.
You were flexible and quick to forgive, when the run didn’t go as planned;
Our bond grew stronger and as a team, we challenged ourselves and the land.
You’ll pull me to the trail!

By 9 you’d slowed, but rationed your strength, jumped less and ran more straight,
Always my companion and trusted friend, like skipper and first mate.
Some say the canine soul is on a higher plane … it has no room for hate;
Anticipating commands before I could ask and still maintaining your gaitl
Let’s keep skiing on the trail!

At 13 the glow remained, though I could see it hurt to run,
One look at your harness and your tail would wag…still yearning for more fun.
I wonder if you reminisced, of our days in snow and rain and sun?
Your grey head on my lap and twinkle in your eye, said you weren’t yet done.
I’ll carry you to the trail.

Now I ski the trail alone; you’re at peace in the woods out back,
As though I’m only partly here, since half our team I lack.
But wait … who’s that up front … pulling with your usual knack?
A backward glance from your youthful face, saying,”Let me take up the slack!

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