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Epitaph For My Best Friend

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Hawkeye
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Post by Hawkeye » December 5, 2009, 4:34 pm

PUCK
"Mischievious Spirit"
Daddy's Little Man
1995-2009


Image

He was my constant companion these past 14 years, my little shadow I introduced simply as "my son."

On our first backcountry trip, just days after being sprung from the pound, it started to snow. Puck quietly got up from the fire and ambled into the tent and went to sleep as though he'd been doing this his whole life. The next day, climbing a vertical peak to catch a view of Silver Lake, Puck shamed me by running to the top, running back down again, then back up ... I finally gave in, clinging to the side of the mountain in panting exhaustion, straining my neck to see as much as I could before turing back. Puck stood atop the peak scanning the view and looking down at me with that dog-grin, as if to say, "What, exactly, is your problem? You're missing a stunning view!"

He never understood why we needed a house when we had all of the grand outdoors for the taking. When for awhile I was between homes in 2002 and traveling Colorado in my truck, Puck was my living "Snuggy," always enthusiastic for the sunrises, ready to bound out and explore wherever we had landed.

Puck hiked the Rio Grande Gorge, camped with me at Diamond Fork hot springs, survived a near-fatal slide down a glacier to the lip of a thousand-foot chasm (I'll never understand how he stopped himself, backpedaling like a cartoon character), and spent endless (it seemed) days exploring the slickrock desert of Utah with me.

He sat by a million campfires, gently panting his contentment as the firelight reflected from his silky black face and shined in his eyes.

It will be a long time coming before I'm able to close a door behind me without looking first to see if he's trying to come through after me.

Puck was my baby, and it was my honor to spend these years in his gentle company. He lives on in my heart, and in the hearts of all those fortunate enough to have loved him over the years.
Last edited by Hawkeye on November 4, 2011, 6:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

mwzephyr
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Post by mwzephyr » December 6, 2009, 9:33 am

Thank you for sharing,
your wonderful life with you son...
I think even now he is chasing your heels, waiting for you to catch up as he has run quite a bit ahead of you... :)

Hawkeye
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Post by Hawkeye » December 6, 2009, 1:48 pm

Thank you, sparrow.

I've come to the same conclusion; Puck will now be my animal guide, as he sees farther and wider than I.

I sure miss burying my face in that fur, tho ...

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Ron Atchison
Inspiration Peak
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Joined: November 18, 2001, 9:08 pm
Location: San Francisco
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Post by Ron Atchison » December 10, 2009, 9:56 pm

I've heard it said that Heaven is the place where we are greeted at the gate by every animal we have ever loved... and wouldn't that be perfect!

Thanks for sharing the beautiful memories with us Hawkeye... your loving description made me miss Puck too. (I can tell by looking into his eyes that he had a courageous and gentle soul.)

~ Ron

Hawkeye
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Post by Hawkeye » December 12, 2009, 2:47 pm

Thanks, Ron.

I wrote in another forum that "Puck was peace personified." That pretty much sums it up.

In all my memories he's still a puppy, though he lived to be a somewhat feeble old man. I remember him running through a field by our house just unbelievably fast, changing directions on a dime, not chasing anything, but just because he could.

There was another time up on the divide where we we camped overlooking this massive, mostly treeless valley. The peak across from us, 2-3 miles away was rugged, snowcapped and beautiful. Puck saw something -- probably a rabbit -- and took off down the mountainside and disappeared under a ridge below. After a bit of time had passed I started to worry about him, and started to scan the valley, calling his name ... Suddenly I saw a little black dot in the distance and I took out my binoculars ... lo and behold, there's Puck, more than halfway up that peak waaaaaaay across the valley, and not slowing a bit.

He showed back up a couple of hours later, panting, and lay down beside the fire and slept like a rock for the rest of the night.

It's amazing how joy and pain and love and loss intermingle in these memories.

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ladybird
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Post by ladybird » December 13, 2009, 2:09 pm

Dear (((((Hawkeye))))))

Thank you for sharing the beautiful memories and for that gorgeous photo of Puck...

He will always be a part of your heart...

love & blessings
ladybird luv
Sunshine surrounds the earth as love surrounds our souls. ~Amethyst Snow-Rivers

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Space
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Post by Space » December 13, 2009, 5:29 pm

(a blank moment for Puck)

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