Sunday, January 19, 2014


Without love there is nothing left to feel. 
Love of another person, love of country, love of family, of beauty and romance and food and wine and music and peaceful crisp days surrounded by the love and warmth and tenderness of our best furry friends. There quite simply is nothing better.
"Ah, Clarissa, let me tell you, all that pleases.  The pond where we swim.  Our apple orchard.  The thunderstorms. The barbecue.  The music playing. Talking in bed. Your grandmother's iced tea.  Deliberating on which walk to take in the morning and which at dusk.  Watching you lower your head to peel peaches and shuck corn...oh, nothing, really, is what pleases.  But what nothing.  Nations go to war for this kind of nothing and in the absence of such nothing, people shrivel up and die."
~ Philip Roth (Professor of Desire)
These words touch my soul...with truth and peace,  comfort and love. It is something I believe we all yearn for, long for, and continuously search for ~ whether we know it or not. Those who find it are blessed.  Those who don't are lost and lonely and struggling to find something and are not quite certain what it is.

It isn't about your resume, the number of accolades you receive each day, the job you have, or certainly not how many expensive possessions you own or the  car you might drive.  It is solely about whether or not you know love. And to me to know life is to love and visa versa. We all put off those things that should really matter in our lives...something is always in the way or more important. 
Marie Beynon Ray wrote, "Begin doing what you want to do now.  We only have this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand ~ melting like a snowflake."
Isn't it how we treat each other? Isn't it defined by respect, kindness, and consistency of love of others?
It is also imperative to find delight in the simple things ... the things that really matter.  We are much more than our labels and titles. We all need people to believe in us and to champion our life goals and be our cheerleaders and hold our hand when we hurt.

We all need people who believe in us, cherish us, snuggle up close when we are down, and dance with us when we are happy.

I am a writer and am reminded daily that I should be writing.  But things, life gets in the way.  There is always something more important pending and I never seem to get started on my 58th book.  I feel stuck.  Then I am reminded of a Booth cartoon showing a man sitting of front of his typewriter with a blank piece of paper.  There are dogs everywhere.  A woman, presumably his wife, is standing next to him, speaking.  The caption says, "Write about dogs!"  This hits home.  This is the answer. 

Dogs delight in the simple things.  We should be more observant of the way they spend their days. Rising, eating, romping, back for a nap and always worshipping us.  My four dogs surround me at the computer, observant, vigilant and  softly snoring always with one eye on me.  It is is a is important.

I love dogs. That comes as no surprise. I have had, and hopefully will have a fair amount of them.  I love other people's dogs.  And yes, I want to write about them about the love and the simplicity that embodies them.  But metaphorically speaking elephants fill my house, but dogs fill it in a real way. It has been said of me that I love dogs more than most people.  There are good reasons for that, perhaps with the most obvious being that dogs REALLY love you! To them you are wonderful every second of the day, and that love never hurts or wavers.  They are love at its purest, love without end.

My simple pledge is to care for them all the days of their lives and keep them healthy and nurture and love them, as they love me. Until the end and at the end, I will live up to that pledge because we really are God to our dogs and must never betray their trust. 

So delight in the simple things, remember those you love and treat them with tenderness, love and respect and be there for them no matter what. Just as our dogs are for us and visa versa.  Perhaps by so doing, others will become more fully aware and realize that in the absence of such things we really do 'shrivel up and die.' 

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