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books on dogs

Dog bless each and every one

    Today being Sunday, we bring you an excerpt from the soon to be released book “Dog Blessings: Poems, Prose, and Prayers Celebrating Our Relationship with Dogs.”
    Edited by June Cotner and published by New World Library, the book honors the special connection that exists between humans and their canine friends — and comes out just in time for St. Francis of Assisi’s feast day.
    October 4 is the special day that dogs, cats, horses, even hamsters will be led to churches around the world for an annual ceremony called “Blessing of the Pets.”

    Ace and I celebrated early with a few poems, prayers and short essays that the book features — from Rudyard Kipling’s “The Power of the Dog” to Janet Lombard’s more contemporary “Furry Shrink.”

    The book, which comes out Oct. 1, features chapters devoted to puppyhood, parting, the bond between human and dog, aging, devotion and a final section with prayers and blessings.

    One of my favorites was “Lessons,” by Joanne Hirase-Stacey:

If I greeted everyone happily
     Instead of eyeing with distrust
If I didn’t pass judgment
     But accepted all
If I listened intently
     With understanding in my eyes
If I brought comfort
     All the time, no matter what
If I loved unconditionally
     Without reservation
If I lived life more simply
     Instead of worrying so much
If I played tirelessly
     And didn’t work so hard
If I made people smile
     Just by my presence in the room
If I experienced true joy
     At the little things in life
Then I’d be the perfect friend
     Just like my dog

Comments

Comment from MG
Time September 21, 2008 at 10:32 am

What a beautiful poem and i`ll certainly be buying that book.

Wouldn`t it be wonderful if ALL dogs were allowed in those Churches in ALL towns and Cities around the World?
Denver?
Ontario?
….?

Ace what can I say….Adorable.
Not wearing reading glasses yet?

Comment from bluhawkk
Time September 21, 2008 at 1:40 pm

Lots of you tube vids blessing of the animals 2007

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppK0r-DWaTc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ogGGnq4YMY&feature=related

————————————–

Henry Beston
Author (1888-1968)
“We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals. Remote from universal nature and living by complicated artifice, man in civilization surveys the creature through the glass of his knowledge and sees thereby a feather magnified and the whole image in distortion. We patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate for having taken form so far below ourselves. And therein do we err. For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings: they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendour and travail of the earth.”
~ “The Outermost House”

Comment from Anne-n-Spencer
Time September 21, 2008 at 7:34 pm

Oh, my! What a richness of beautiful things to read. Bluhawk, that is a wonderful passage, and I’m so glad you posted it. And the poem, too–not to mention that great picture of Ace.

Though I’m a huge fan of St. Francis (as well as of the dogs’ own patron saint, St. Roche), I kind of have the idea that the blessing is more for our benefit. One way of looking at it might be that the animals are such perfect beings that they don’t need church. They carry it around with them. :-)

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