Ball playing Mongrel

Flapping ears mark her longing to fly

But the bitch never misses a ball.

Frisbees, sticks, anything will do

She catches high balls or curves

Gleefully straining and running for her life

Jumping higher than any cow, trying for the moon.

Grannies and children beware!

The exuberant buoyancy of this dame

Takes no prisoners:

Greetings mostly end with mongrel and co in a heap on the floor.

Walks become exercises in sounding

And working like an express train

Steam engines can’t hold a candle to

The hard work initiated the moment somebody offers to put her on the line.

Blue-black eyes glitter at the feast of chewing a shoe


In later years, the lady found

Greater pleasure in chewing gum

Scrunched at the nearby garage.

Nobody would have thought she ever could slow down

But age and infirmity took its toll

And one day even this lightning-ball

Decided to take leave.


Doubtless she catches every high-flier

In the happy hunting grounds.

© HMH, 2013







14 responses to “Ball playing Mongrel”

  1. Debi Ennis Binder avatar

    This is so beautiful, Hanne! Was she your dog?

    1. Hanne H avatar
      Hanne H

      Debi, She was the dog that I grew up with. And thank you so much for your kind words.

      1. Debi Ennis Binder avatar

        I think it’s amazing how you bring her to life for me, almost as though I knew her!

        1. Hanne H avatar
          Hanne H

          Debi, she was special. I knew her dam — through friends — and met her as she was newly born. I have only fond memories of her.

          1. Debi Ennis Binder avatar

            I think having a pet since birth is special. We had three kittens born in our living room many years ago. We kept all three. Our daughter kept mom and the first born, we kept the other two. One just passed away these 16 years later, the other two are carrying on, but slowing down. It’s almost like raising a child.

          2. Hanne H avatar
            Hanne H

            Debi, just saw your last comment. I love the idea of kittens born in your living room. Didn’t get a cat until I was grown up and lived alone. That one came to me from a neighbour house, and it was just eight weeks old when it moved in. He was a rat hunter of excellence. . .

          3. Debi+Ennis+Binder avatar

            So he earned his living! We moved to the mountains about a year ago and have mice. Four cats–meh. One tortie–let me at them! Yes, she brings them to us for well-earned praise. We can always tell when one has found its way out of the garage and into the house by the way she stalks it. I just keep my feet up! During the spring and summer we put out non-kill traps and take them to a field. But she always finds one that got away. Dear Cookie, mouse hunter!

          4. Hanne H avatar
            Hanne H

            I could’ve used a mouse hunter in my mother’s house during the later years of her life. They infested the attic and kept finding their way down into the house. . .

          5. Debi+Ennis+Binder avatar

            I strongly dislike mice! Here in the high desert, we have a lot of hanta virus, carried primarily by deer mice. Those are normally found out in the wild, but I’m sure they also get into homes. None of my cats are outside cats, but when Cookie brings in a mouse from the garage, I sort of freak out! I scold her–you have enough mice to catch (1 or 2!) without bringing in your own. Gives me the shivers!

          6. Hanne H avatar
            Hanne H

            I agree! Totally. Mice are pests and carry all sorts of bacteria. I had to clear out my mother’s attic, which was infested — it took several weeks — but I kept going. After that, I was ill for a while. No wonder. There were dead mice and nests in the isolation material.

          7. Debi Ennis Binder avatar

            Yuck!! So glad you didn’t get seriously ill! We’re not trap/kill people, but we sure got rid of a bunch this summer in the field. Just can’t help it. 😕

          8. Hanne H avatar
            Hanne H

            That is sad but true. . .

  2. Anna+Casamento+Arrigo avatar

    Sweet!! Made me smile! Great imagery!

    1. Hanne H avatar
      Hanne H

      Thank you very much, Anna!! Your opinion means a lot to me.

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