Riley was the right friend at the right time.
Actually his name was listed on the pedigree paperwork as “Sir Riley” and that he was. From the minute he was brought to me he was the lord of the manor. Riley was a gift given to help heal a broken heart. His quirky, needy, emotional little personality was less of a medicinal as was originally intended and more like a foot in the door. That spirited spaniel prevented me from closing that or any door permanently. I mean, after all, you can’t close a door on someone standing in the threshold. Especially when that someone has the largest brown eyes that communicate with a look that you are their world and that they literally can’t go on without you. And such is the relationship with many a King Charles Cavalier spaniel and their owner. I’d say that 84 in dog years is a good long time to spend with a human. And then The Goodbye comes. Like the roses from my garden that bud and blossom fragrant and vivid in color. They are also fleeting. No gorgeous rose lasts forever. They are not eternal but are a temporary delight to be enjoyed in the moment.
“Gather ye rosebuds while ye may, old time is still a-flying, and this same flower that smiles today, tomorrow will be dying.” Do you remember that line from the movie The Dead Poets Society? It was first written in the year 1648. Those words written by a vicar in Devonshire still have a voice today. Unlike yesterday’s rose and unlike Sir Riley.
It’s essential to realize that all living things have a beginning and an end. Time deceives us into thinking that “it” will always be there and we will always be in it. That our roses and Rileys and relationships are constant. Since we are all subject to time, which as Robert Herrick stated, “is still a-flying,” we would do well to appreciate all the moments that we can.
The petals of the rose in this photo dropped one by one during the time it took to write these words this morning. Such is this life. It’s both sad and so very sweet and so are the memories of roses and Riley.