Jesse James – To All Good Dogs


Today I said hail and farewell to my dog, Jesse James, who lived to the grand old age (for a large Lab) of nearly fifteen years.  It was hard to say goodbye.

Jesse James  August 9, 2001 – March 5, 2016

What purpose did they serve, all the good dogs that once ran through the world and wait now in the shadowy quiet of the past? 

They lightened our burdens and drove away our enemies and stayed when others left us. They gave aid and comfort, protection and security. They held a mirror wherein we might see ourselves as we long to be. They gave us a glimpse of the world beyond the narrow confines of our own species. 

Although we make dull students, slowly they help us learn how to command and to protect with wisdom and justice and imagination. 

They taught and still teach us the joy of giving generosity and kindness and love – without the thought of gainful return. 

And now – all the fleet hounds, the staunch mastiffs, the loyal shepherds, the dancing toys, the fumbling puppies, pets on silken pillows, workers plodding at their tasks, the special ones you loved best, those of ours we still miss. 

To all the good dogs, goodbye
Until on some brighter day, in some fair place, 
You run out to greet us again

    George and Helen Papashvily