A Spade stands ready

My first poem here, one I’ve just finished, so still may have some tinkering. Bobby is our second springer; much loved, and still hanging in there, but he’s only heading one way: to the where mystery will be.

Main text of your writing.


          A spade stands ready.  

A spade stands – now ready beside the shed;

It’s cold January, and he’s not yet dead.

He may be lost, he may have forgotten,

what a dog should do – he’s not forsaken;

though his mind is aslant he’s always ours;

so, we shall watch and mind him in the hours,

and will now give him his longest day’s rest,

for he’s always given his very best.

He’ll soon pass on, and after all is said,

the spade stands – now ready beside the shed.


   (Bobby, Springer Spaniel – brain tumour)


                                                           D G Moody


© Dodgem 2022
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yes, my dog was gravely ill last year this month and I understand perfectly well how it is, the spade was used in April. doleful for me but a good poem.


This tugs at the heart. Well written, but I was going to ask whether you had thought about using free verse for this as well.


A good first effort, DG., that can be refined in my opinion. Here are a few points that I offer for your consideration: you have chosen ten lines of rhyming couplets but lines 4 and 5 don’t rhyme; the adjective ‘aslant’ in line 5 jars with me but can’t think of a suitable alternative offhand; The number of syllables in each line is inconsistent (9 11 10 9 10 9 9 11 10 9). Without re-writing your poem but simply rearranging it to a nne-syllable one, it could look like the following: A spade stands ready beside the shed; It… Read more »


God this is heart wrenching, Dodgem. Do I know how you feel! Your poem is powerful in its simplicity… and honesty.

By the way, we are all heading where he’s heading. He is one of the lucky ones who is truly loved, cared for, and will be fondly remembered.

A grand debut.



I concur absolutely. I have been vegetarian for over sixty years. And on the Larkin front I have never been acolyte nor believer in any conventional ‘belief system’. Much more comfortable having a ‘belief’ that fits within your own skin, and I would venture to suggest that in the end they all boil down to the same thing. 🙂

I send positive thoughts for Bobby, and you and yours of course.


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