The dog and I are both grown old;
On these wild downs we watch all day;
He looks in my face when the wind blows cold,
And thus methinks I hear him say:
'The grey stone circlet is below,
The village smoke is at our feet;
We nothing hear but the sailing crow,
And wandering flocks, that roam and bleat.
Far off the early horseman hies,
In shower or sunshine rushing on;
Yonder the dusty whirlwind flies;
The distant coach is seen and gone.
Though solitude around is spread,
Master, alone thou shalt not be;
And when the turf is on thy head,
I only shall remember thee!'
I marked his look of faithful care,
I placed my hand on his shaggy side:
'There is a sun that shines above,
A sun that shines on both, ' I cried.
- "Grown Old Together," by Bowles, found in The Dog in British Poetry, p. 244-5. I believe the Bowles referred to is actually Caroline Bowles (1786-1854), who later married the poet Robert Southey. The tender thoughtfulness of this piece stood out in a poetry collection that tends toward very talky selections.
'A sun that shines on both.' Ah.