Monday, February 17, 2014

Ode to Ralph, By Julie Lochner Riber

Julie Lochner Riber sent this poem around a few days ago. Those of us who knew Ralph will miss his friendliness and energy, and at times, his utter craziness:


Ralph Riber
(June 12, 2003 – February 13, 2014)

I’m big, black and beautiful.  My heart is full of love.
Now I’ve gone to heaven with the other dogs above.

God whispered to me “Come, Ralph!” and I had no choice but go.
I could not say, “Not ready, God!” that journey I dreaded so.

It was very hard to leave my home, mom, dad and sister, Dolly.
They’re awfully broken-hearted now, not feeling the least bit jolly.

God must have had a purpose though, ‘cause I’m hopping cloud to cloud.
No one yells at me “shut up, Ralph” just because I bark too loud.

I’m up here chasing Frisbees, tennis balls, sticks, even chickens!
Eternally looking down on you, and sending turbo lickins.

I’ll love you and I’ll miss you, but I’m guarding you even still.
‘Cause that’s my job, I’m serious, death does not change my will.

I’ll visit in your dreams and all those memories we share…
Take care of sister, Dolly-girl, and tell her that I care.

And one day when she’s called up here, I wait until she comes.
We can run around together, free at last and chewing bones.

So weep for me a while and then start moving on.
But don’t forget the love we’ve shared since that lucky day one.

 Ralph and Dolly

I knew Ralph and Dolly were a team, so I asked Julie how Dolly was doing. Here is her reply:

“Dolly is pretty confused.  Keeps looking around all over the house and when she can’t find him she follows us everywhere.  I suspect she’ll be with us a lot from now on.  We’re all pretty “lost” right now."

One of Julie and Wes’ friends on facebook commented: ‘I hope he runs into my Tippy, our Plama and our Foxy. They are all attractive females.

Love this thought!

Thank you for letting us share this ‘Ode to Ralph’. As I read it, I was reminded of the Celtic Bards of old as they wove stories to remember the fallen in battle. Julie in a past life?

Thinking of Julie, Wes, Dolly, and Ralph.


Aunt CB said...

Weeping once again as I read the poem! Weeping for Dolly, JUlie and Wes and myself as I remember our dog Corky! Good memories BUT how hard! An empty space! Always! And for Dolly who really can not understand where her brother went? Hug her for me, Julie!

Alison Herdeg said...

I remember when our first cat Zauberon died, his brother Friskers would sit under a tree in the yard for hours, just staring up through the branches toward the sky. This was a new behavior for him, so I can only assume he was trying to catch a glimpse of Zaubo frolicking in heaven! I hope Ralph is not chasing my cats too much up there. A beautiful poem, Julie.

Tom Kinsella said...

Remember when we were kids and people used to say, "Animals don't think; they act by instinct." Those people either never lived with animals, were extremely dense, or just didn't open their eyes. Losing a pet hurts so much because we know they think, feel, and have emotions. Love to you Julie and Wes -- and Dolly and you, too, Ralph.