Walking with Jasper

I used to love walking with our dog, Jasper. He was a cross-breed Jack Russell and the funniest, most inquisitive dog I’ve ever known. He died on 10th March ten years ago. He was my reason for walking three times a day: in the morning before work, again in the afternoon, and a short walk last thing at night. As we walked, I talked to him, tried out words, lines and combinations for poetry, and stories. There was a strong feeling of camaraderie between dog and human walking in all kinds of weather. Neither of us liked it when the weather was too hot; he would pant and I would try to keep to the shade, where he sniffed among grass and twigs and dug up the dirt.

My favourite times for walking with Jasper were early morning and late afternoon, twilight times, when we would encounter foxes, deer and all kinds of birds. It was on one of those evening walks, down a village lane overhung with trees, past a paddock with horses – Jasper loved horses – up to a quiet spot by the river, when  a barn owl flew out of the growing gloom towards me, swooping inches above my head and then away, up into the trees.

end of a hot day
silver wings glide on twilight
a barn owl ghosting

Kim M. Russell, 2018

My response to dVerse Poets Pub Haibun Monday: Take a walk

Bjorn, our host this Monday, asks us to imagine ourselves walking: are we strolling, trotting or slouching; where are you and what’s the time; why are we walking; what do we see and how are we dressed; is it sunshine or rain?

He has also shared a few quotations about walking, for inspiration.

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42 thoughts on “Walking with Jasper

  1. I bet you do still miss Jasper. I love walking at twilight (and at night). The haiku at the end is beyond lovely. I keep pestering my husband for us to adopt a dog to accompany me on my walks. Nope. No go. Jasper looks to be have been a handsome and winsome little lad.

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    1. Jasper was the best! I would have loved another dog, but my husband couldn’t bear the agony of loving an animal and losing it again. He was the same when our cat Tosca was killed, but then had a change of heart when he saw how lonely Luna was. And now we’re in love with little Mojo, too. They don’t mean to, but animals break your heart.

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  2. There is nothing better than walking side by side with unconditional love.Thanks for sharing your sweet Jasper with us. He sounds so much like my “Barley” who made it to almost 17 years.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Barley is a cool name for a dog – my mum had a Jack Russell called Barney and my daughter has two Jack Russells, Ruby and Buster, mother and son, who are lovely to walk with too.

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  3. Love your haibun, Kim! I agree that early morning or late afternoon/evening are best times to walk! I understand your feelings for Jasper…I still miss walking my Lily (husky/lab mix) too. and I confess I don’t walk nearly as often without her.

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