Pablo Neruda
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My dog has died.
I buried him in the garden
next to a rusted old machine.

Some day I'll join him right there,
but now he's gone with his shaggy coat,
his bad manners and his cold nose,
and I, the materialist, who never believed
in any promised heaven in the sky
for any human being,
I believe in a heaven I'll never enter.
Yes, I believe in a heaven for all dogdom
where my dog waits for my arrival
waving his fan-like tail in friendship.

Ai, I'll not speak of sadness here on earth,
of having lost a companion
who was never servile.
His friendship for me, like that of a porcupine
withholding its authority,
was the friendship of a star, aloof,
with no more intimacy than was called for,
with no exaggerations:
he never climbed all over my clothes
filling me full of his hair or his mange,
he never rubbed up against my knee
like other dogs obsessed with sex.

No, my dog used to gaze at me,
paying me the attention I need,
the attention required
to make a vain person like me understand
that, being a dog, he was wasting time,
but, with those eyes so much purer than mine,
he'd keep on gazing at me
with a look that reserved for me alone
all his sweet and shaggy life,
always near me, never troubling me,
and asking nothing.

Ai, how many times have I envied his tail
as we walked together on the shores of the sea
in the lonely winter of Isla Negra
where the wintering birds filled the sky
and my hairy dog was jumping about
full of the voltage of the sea's movement:
my wandering dog, sniffing away
with his golden tail held high,
face to face with the ocean's spray.

Joyful, joyful, joyful,
as only dogs know how to be happy
with only the autonomy
of their shameless spirit.

There are no good-byes for my dog who has died,
and we don't now and never did lie to each other.

So now he's gone and I buried him,
and that's all there is to it.


Translated, from the Spanish, by Alfred Yankauer

Sara Facio-Pablo Neruda Chu Tuh

Pablo Neruda and Chu Tuh
Photo: Sara Facio.

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“Joyful, joyful, joyful - as only dogs know how to be happy with only the autonomy of their shameless spirit…” ― Pablo Neruda

Sara-Facio-art-photographie-argentine-misericordia-noir-et-blanc-portrait-Pablo-Neruda

photo: Sara Facio

“Dog in a Car,” from A Star by Day, by David McCord (1950)
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Dog in a Car

He grins a little as they drive him by.
Of what his nose needs there’s a fresh supply
Round every corner, up the rainy field:
He has no daily walk of equal yield.
His head hangs out, his tongue out farther still;
His bark is bolder from that window sill.
His nose is longer on the modern breeze—-
His father being Scotch, not Pekingese.

A lesser breed on leash or running loose
Would find his comradeship of little use;
A dog transported by the family Ford
Rides far beyond the days he loved or warred.
His ancestors on purely urban smells
Leaned hard enough, but they had nothing else.
They hadn’t won to his synthetic taste:
Investigation kept them out of haste.

You drive a dog from State to other State:
His senses meet with scents he can’t relate.
He hasn’t time. His little nostrils twitch.
Was that a rabbit, mole, or brindle bitch?
His eye grows bright. He reaches out in space.
The local brothers hardly see his face.
He’s whirling through a night of strange impact:
Of atavistic cats he once attacked.

from A Star by Day, by David McCord
Garden City, NJ: Doubleday & Company, 1950

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Robert Louis Stevenson
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Robert Louis Stevenson and his father


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Stevenson (on far right), his wife Fanny, her son Lloyd Osbourne and their dog

THE CHARACTER OF DOGSCollapse )

Jerome K. Jerome
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George (Wingrave), Jerome's gardener, JKJ and Rowena Jerome in Jerome's garden at Wallingford

Francoise Sagan
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(Arriving In Naples 1961)

Nurit Zarchi
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Photo: Dan Porges

Jerome K. Jerome
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Jerome K. Jerome
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He began the day badly. He took me out and lost me. It would be so much better, would he consent to the usual arrangement, and allow me to take him out. I am far the abler leader: I say it without conceit. I am older than he is, and I am less excitable. I do not stop and talk with every person I meet, and then forget where I am. I do less to distract myself: I rarely fight, I never feel I want to run after cats, I take but little pleasure in frightening children. I have nothing to think about but the walk, and the getting home again. If, as I say, he would give up taking me out, and let me take him out, there would be less trouble all round. But into this I have never been able to persuade him.

He had mislaid me once or twice, but in Sloane Square he lost me entirely. When he loses me, he stands and barks for me. If only he would remain where he first barked, I might find my way to him; but, before I can cross the road, he is barking half-way down the next street. I am not so young as I was and I sometimes think he exercises me more than is good for me. I could see him from where I was standing in the King's Road. Evidently he was most indignant. I was too far off to distinguish the barks, but I could guess what he was saying—

"Damn that man, he's off again."

He made inquiries of a passing dog—

"You haven't smelt my man about anywhere, have you?"

(A dog, of course, would never speak of SEEING anybody or anything, smell being his leading sense. Reaching the top of a hill, he would say to his companion—"Lovely smell from here, I always think; I could sit and sniff here all the afternoon." Or, proposing a walk, he would say—"I like the road by the canal, don't you? There's something interesting to catch your nose at every turn.")

"No, I haven't smelt any man in particular," answered the other dog. "What sort of a smelling man is yours?"

"Oh, an egg-and-bacony sort of a man, with a dash of soap about him."

"That's nothing to go by," retorted the other; "most men would answer to that description, this time of the morning. Where were you when you last noticed him?"

At this moment he caught sight of me, and came up, pleased to find me, but vexed with me for having got lost.

"Oh, here you are," he barked; "didn't you see me go round the corner? Do keep closer. Bothered if half my time isn't taken up, finding you and losing you again."

Virginia and Leonard Woolf
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Вирджиния Вулф. Флаш

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