Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > An American Anthology, 1787–1900
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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  An American Anthology, 1787–1900.  1900.
 
397. Obituary
 
By Thomas William Parsons
 
 
FINDING Francesca full of tears, I said,
“Tell me thy trouble.” “Oh, my dog is dead!
Murdered by poison!—no one knows for what—
Was ever dog born capable of that?”
“Child,”—I began to say, but checked my thought,—        5
“A better dog can easily be bought.”
For no—what animal could him replace?
Those loving eyes! That fond, confiding face!
Those dear, dumb touches! Therefore I was dumb.
From word of mine could any comfort come?        10
A bitter sorrow ’t is to lose a brute
Friend, dog or horse, for grief must then be mute,—
So many smile to see the rivers shed
Of tears for one poor, speechless creature dead.
When parents die there ’s many a word to say,—        15
Kind words, consoling—one can always pray;
When children die ’t is natural to tell
Their mother, “Certainly, with them ’t is well!”
But for a dog, ’t was all the life he had,
Since death is end of dogs, or good or bad.        20
This was his world; he was contented here;
Imagined nothing better, naught more dear,
Than his young mistress; sought no brighter sphere;
Having no sin, asked not to be forgiven;
Ne’er guessed at God nor ever dreamed of heaven.        25
Now he has passed away, so much of love
Goes from our life, without one hope above!
When a dog dies there ’s nothing to be said
But—kiss me, darling!—dear old Smiler’s dead.
 

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