ABC WEDNESDAY letter of the week is 'G'.
See my PLUS blog for my 'G' photograph.
These two illustrations do not seem to be connected. Our city was dominated by a huge, dirty steel-mill for decades. When it closed, an anthology of poetry on the subject was published and the following poem of mine was included. I compared the ugly steel-works to an unattractive old guard-dog, since the works had brought security to the city.
Head down but watchful,
You have sat at our gate for many a year,
Your immensity sprawled at the end of our garden.
Knowing your place;
You have protected us,
Our dignity, our sense of worth,
Our livelihood and our pride.
True, you have been no beauty,
Your fur rust-stained,
Your teeth tarnished,
Your claws blunted by time.
Your breath has clouded our skies;
It has hung, like a malodorous curtain,
Veiling our horizons.
Our lives have been your diet.
Into that great mouth at morning,
Spewed out at sundown.
Your hunger has been insatiable.
Even at night you have demanded, constantly, to be fed.
Your stomach has rumbled;
Your eyes have gleamed watchfully.
There has been no let-up.
You have been both servant and master.
Yet such a comforting presence you were.
We listened to your breathing in the dark
And were secure.
Your kennel is shabby now.
Your garden worn and patched.
Your old bones scattered
By your old bones.
Now comes the end.
The kindly needle,
The last yawn.
You will be replaced,
But you will be missed.
Goodbye Guard Dog, Old Friend.