All You Had to Do
by Martin
If there’s such a place as Rainbow Bridge, it is a tiny comfort that you went there together, inseparable in life as you were in death. It was nobody’s fault, not even that of the motorist who didn’t see you in time. You were always faster than me, even before surgery left me unable to run, but until that day you would always stop running about when I called, and come back.
That’s all you had to do that morning - come back to me.
What went wrong? What stopped you coming back at the end of your free run, as you’d always come back before? Why did you run from the safe park, your familiar playground, soft underfoot and full of interesting smells, into the traffic?
Duffy, did you know, when I lifted your broken body off the road, that I was there, blubbering and cursing my inability to get there faster? Did you know you weren’t alone in your last moments?
Did you know, Ruffy, that I would have picked you up too, from that horrible puddle of blood, if people hadn’t held me back?
I’ll never know the answers.
All you had to do was come back. I would have got you safely across the road, and home for your snacks and snooze. You’d both still be here, and the house wouldn’t be so quiet. We wouldn’t be sobbing over photos of your quizzical looks, and videos of your chasing and wrestling games, wishing we could still scratch your heads and rub your bellies. We wouldn’t be seeing empty spaces where you and your beds and toys used to be.
If there’s such a place as Rainbow Bridge (and since losing you we have more than ever wanted to believe there is), may there be all the grass, trees, puddles and interesting smells you’ll ever need, and open spaces to run free, and squirrels to chase (but never catch). May there be lots of friends to race and wrestle against. May there be all the food and water and - most importantly - all the biscuits you’ll ever want. May you have warm comfortable places to sleep, may there be no deadly roads, and may you always romp about together as you did in life. No more ear or eye infections, no more tummy troubles, just fun.
For us, though, there is only that cry to the night - all you had to do was come back.
Comments would be appreciated by the author, Martin
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