"I will lend to you for awhile, a pup," God said,
"For you to love while he lives and mourn when he's dead.
Maybe twelve or fourteen years, or days--two or three,
But will you, 'till I call him back, take care of him for me?
"He'll bring his charms to gladden you and should his stay be brief,
you'll always have his memories as solace for your grief.
I cannot promise he will stay, since all from earth return,
but there are lessons taught below I want this pup to learn.
"I've looked the whole world over in search of teachers true
and from the folk that crowd life's land I have chosen you.
Now will you give him all your love nor think the labor vain,
nor hate me when I come to take my pup back again?"
"I fancied that I heard you say, 'Dear Lord, thy will be done,
For all the joys this dog will bring, the risk of grief I'll run.
I'll shelter him with tenderness, I'll love him while I may,
And for the happiness I've known, forever grateful stay.
“ 'But should you call him back much sooner than I've planned,
I'll brave the bitter grief that comes, and try to understand.
" 'If, by my love, I've managed, your wishes to achieve
In memory of him I loved, to help me while I grieve,
When my faithful bundle departs this world of strife,
You'll send yet another pup and I'll love him all his life.' "
By Joy LaCaille