Poem By A Friend

The following poem was written by a camping friend and dog lover, Sharon Blawat.


February 5, 2013

When stranger would come meet him
He’d show his intelligent side
No one could deny
That he was a sweet loving guy
So many writings have given him
Saying goodbye to this fellow
Is difficult as can be
In our lives the pets we have had
Are never ever forgotten
Boomer will remain in the hearts
Of anyone that has met him

He Impatiently Awaited His Leash

He impatiently awaited his leash.

He hurriedly tugged at his collar.

He loudly barked disturbing the peace.

He stopped in his tracks when he heard the holler,

That came resoundingly from his master’s mouth,

That fell on the ears of all who were near,

And he felt the yank and tug that left no doubt

That he needed to stand still in a little fear

Of displeasing the one who had come to mean so much,

The one who loved him through and through

And the superlative other who made such a fuss and such

Over a love of the dog who proved so true,

Over the very dog who proved so true,

The now late chocolate lab who proved so very, very true

The one who has left the man and the his wife

The dog’s alpha and omega,

The truly sad two,

Alone and knowing that he was

The alpha and omega of dogs

For those two, now so alone as they look at the couch

And the chair where he slept and the box of his

Toys, yes, those, so lonely in the box, too .

High Noon in Arizona, Washington, Hollywood and Chicago

A spokesperson for the Arizona Division of the U.S.

Bureau of Alcohol. Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

stated, “It is the West and the West was won by the gun,”

in what seemed like an attempt to give reason to the

mayhem from the grocery store parking lot in Tucson

to the office building parking lot in North Phoenix

on the very day “Gabby” Giffords testified in Washington

for gun control as representatives of the people of

America politely refrained, if they even knew or cared,

from asking her about the semi-automatic Glock she

admittedly and ironically owned, like the one Jared Lee

Loughner used to blow a hole in her head. But after all,

she had been the Tombstone Territory’s representative

and like the man said, “It is the West and the West was

won by the gun.”  Gary Cooper stood tall and handsome

as he drew his gun at High Noon and the Academy of

Motion Picture Arts and Sciences stood, pulled out their

Glocks and went down in a blaze of glory not seen

since the Shootout at the OK Corral. Years before on

Stony Island Avenue on the South side of the city of

Chicago a father who had just sat through a double

feature of High Noon and OK Corral stood, pointed

his Colt 45 fingers at his son and blew him to smithereens

as the ten-year-old laughed and  threw himself against their

car in the parking lot where years later little

boys really would blow each other to bits.

The Proverb Admonishes

The proverb admonishes, “Don’t

         get between a she-bear and her

cubs.”  They sat and watched

         the survival of the fittest being

played out at what otherwise

         would have been the terrifying

distance of twelve feet, but

         even the adventurous camera-

man wisely used his high

         powered zoom lens as mother

bison tried to protect their

         young from mother wolves

who desperately needed to

         feed their pups back in the

winter’s den.  A bison calf

         lay mauled but not killed

by a mother wolf who sat

         staring from a safe distance

of perhaps twelve feet.

         The calf’s mother licked the

wounds and snorted and shook

         her head defiantly at the wolf.

Both mothers left at night fall

         to return at daybreak where

they found the calf who had

         survived the cold, lonely,

painful night, futilely strugg-

         ling to stand at its mother’s

urging to flee for the safety

         of the woods.  She licked and

nudged in patient desperation

         while the mother wolf sat near-

by. The mother bison watched

         her calf struggle and fall. She

then turned and left her still

         breathing calf to catch the herd.

The mother wolf moved in

         for the kill. Her pups would

survive and grow, play and

         frolic in the verdant spring

fields until the day a big, male

         black bear visited.  For how long

did the mother bison miss, ache

         and long for the calf she had to

abandon?  For the moment, the

         two viewers felt the conflict of

joy and sorrow from the safe

         distance of twelve feet.

He Stood Over the Kitchen Sink

As when a single drop

of  white vinegar


first touches

baking soda,


his tears erupted



when the first

word about his now

dead dog


emerged from his

lips and touched


the dry, desert air.


And then one day

as another word


emerged, he thought

about the tear


as it, too, emerged

but just a moment



and knew, it was time

to let the air dry


the tear and cry


no more


when he spoke

of his


now dead dog.




Fire Consumes Wood

His eyes caught the line,

“Fire consumes wood…

as time consumes us,” and

he lingered awhile.  He set

the novel aside, glanced at the

candles burning in the fireplace

and looked at his legs crossed

on the ottoman like two dogs

from the same litter resting

heads crossed at the

crook of their necks.  The

dogs lifted their heads and

rubbed each other’s noses

and then lay still.  He saw the

spider veins crawling around

the sides of his ankles, the

scar on the shin from when

a board dropped and cleanly

sliced the skin to the bone

forty some years ago as he

helped clean up a house after

a tornado ripped through his

Old Kentucky Hometown.  He

rubbed the faint scar on his knee

which once was a gaping wound

and recalled the fall from the

tree in his eighth grade girl

friend’s backyard as he was

trying to show off and how

the bark just like number

ten sandpaper instantaneously

left the sheath over the knee cap

exposed for all the world, not

to mention his then former

girlfriend, to see. He winced

recalling the alcohol being

poured copiously into the wound

by his mother and how she furiously

scrubbed out the dirt and

meticulously tweezed the slivers

from the flesh as if she were

plucking her eyebrows on a

Sunday morning before church.

He picked gently at a scab on his

other knee from a scrape on the

rough wall of the pool just days

before. He tightened his thigh

muscles and recalled significant

definition from years of cycling

and jogging where now wrinkles

looked up and smiled deviously.

He rubbed his legs, slapped his

thighs and said, “Time to get up,

boys. I need another cup of coffee.”


The Ten P.M. Walk

On Tuesday, they had to euthanize their

twelve-year-old Chocolate Lab.


On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday

at ten p.m. and perhaps for every evening

in the foreseeable future for


however long it would take, the man picked

up his mesquite hiking stick and his 225

lumen, compact flashlight


and headed down the stars of the condo

to walk his dog.  He made his way

through the back parking


lot with a lighted hill on his left leading to the

upper swimming pool and condos on his right.

He watched the blue, flickering light


in some and wondered if any of the darkened

condos were in foreclosure. He listened

to the sounds of the fountain


as he passed.  The cascading water reminded

him, in a small way, of home and the waves

of Lake Michigan where his dog


had loved to romp. Periodically, he would

depress the button of the flashlight

half-way to spot flash along


the hill.  Once he spooked a coyote at rest.

At the end of the parking lot, the trail

began which led to an underpass


and access to the mountain preserve where his dog

had loved to hike. He pushed the on button

all the way down so the flash


stayed on. As he walked to the bench that sat along

the trail, the light created shadows on the shrubs.

It never failed to stop him in his tracks.


He scanned on down the trail, the wash in front

of him and the darkened hill in the moonless

night behind him. He looked for


signs of javelina boars with tusks, sows and their

piglets and packs of coyotes. “Oh, Boomer, where

are you, buddy?  You’re supposed to be


here so we could protect each other.”  The man turned

and slowly walked back to the condo.



Fear in the Valley of the Shadow of Death

The big, black SUV roared past me like a

Raging bull as I jogged in the early evening



It startled me especially after reading about

The drive-by shooting on the bleak streets

Of the South Valley —


Leaving two women dead.  It had been a

Drug related shooting but the women were

Just collateral damage.


The day before that some seventy-year-old

Paranoid guy went vengefully berserk at

A nice office building


Two blocks from my condo. Following an

Arbitration meeting that didn’t end to

The old guy’s satisfaction


He chased his two enemies, the sued

And the sued’s lawyer, out the doors

And shot them dead


At what had become a Bad Day at Black

Rock or High Noon or Shootout at

The O.K. Corral.


Take your pick in this Wild West town.

The victims looked like wild-eyed coyotes

Being chased by a big,


bad wolf foaming at the mouth.  I saw the

brake lights of the SUV.  They looked like

The fiery eyes of an


Angry bull.  The vehicle turned around

And headed back my way. The driver

Gunned the engine.


The bull snorted and scraped its front

Foot on the gravely street.  Approaching

Me in the growing darkness,


The vehicle slowed.  I couldn’t see through

The tinted windows.  It stopped.  I kept

Jogging. The passenger side


Window came down and a voice yelled

For me to stop. I froze in my tracks.

The voice emerged


From the darkness into the darkness.

I regretted having worn reflective

Clothing. “Could you please


Tell us where the Pointe Condos are?”

“Sure.  Right there.”  “Thanks.”

The voice vanished


Behind the closing window. The bull

Turned into the entry way, stopped

At the gate, punched


In the code.  The arm rose and the

Bull trotted into the






All Because He Wanted the Twenty-One Bucks

Because he wanted the twenty-one bucks,

this is what they went through in this

wonderful, technologically sophisticated

age: the check sat lonely, unattended,

isolated and ignored for nine whole months.

When those snowbirds flew into Phoenix

and retrieved it from their mailbox, of

course it was beyond the viable ninety

day limit for cashing.  The wife said,

“I’ll just shred it.”  The husband of Dutch

descent, protested, “Twenty-one bucks

is twenty-one bucks. Happy hour here

we come.” So she called; they

got the twenty-one bucks and shortly

thereafter, the cable service was dis-

connected, in fact, cancelled.  What?

True. Why? After hours waiting for

someone at the cable company to

pick up the phone, a real human female

from Rochester, New York did answer.

She said she was going to put them on

hold to find out what had happened and

she and the conversation just went away.

The familiar sound of the recorded message

once again rang in his ear. He pushed #3

on the cell phone again, waited for

another eternity and finally another real human

female answered. She was from Arizona. For

some reason he started singing “Take

It Easy” by the Eagles into the phone.

He was running down the road trying

to lighten his load. The real human female

laughed. He almost cried while the

bars of the battery of his phone started

to disappear from phone fatigue. He told

the story all over again. The real human

female then declared that a reconnect

charge and a deposit would be required

to get the cable connection up and going

thus far exceeding the twenty-one buck

refund from nine months ago. He still

wanted to know why the disconnect.

Just a technologically sophisticated

glitch the real human female from the

company guessed. The reissue of

check for twenty-one bucks must have

triggered the computer generated action.

He didn’t think he should have to pay

for a computer glitch. The real human

female from Phoenix on the other end of

the line just sat in silence. He could hear

her loud and clear: “Hey, Glenn Frey

wannabe, do you want the connection

or not?” He pulled out his credit

card.  His wife just stared at him

as he went to recharge the cell