Posted by: Thomas Drinkard | July 30, 2011

We Lost A Friend

Normally, I wouldn’t post a personal event on this blog, but this is different.
Thursday at about 6 PM, we lost our Bull Terrier, Winnie. This is the first time since October 1974 that our house hasn’t been shared with a BT. We have wonderful memories of so many of them.
A Facebook Friend shared this poem. To a man who has just lost a four-legged friend, it’s quite moving.

Through misty eyes~~
Giacomo, Max and Me

by Fredrich Mohre (Frederick Moore)

Saturday nights were special,
In the good days, times before.
That was when I’d dim the lights
And padlock the front door.
Then all the others went to bed,
’cause they didn’t want to hear
the sounds of classic opera;
the music I revere.
I’d ice some beer and pour some booze,
Put “TOSCA” on DVD.
Just music and my canine pal,
Just Puccini, Max and me.

A flask of German malted,
A shot of ‘Jackie D’
Will lock your problems up, away,
And let your mind be free.
I introduce Giacomo Puccini,
( a name you might not know)
a genius of melodic word;
but died some time ago.
He wrote such lovely opera,
I was an instant adoree,
Heartfelt touching arias,
From Giacomo, to Max and me.

Now who is Max, you ask yourself,
The other of us three ?
A big old gold retriever,
With a varied family tree.
We’d share a bowl of popcorn,
He’d sip some of my brew.
And never would he tell a soul,
If I cracked a note or two.
Ya’ couldn’t ask for a better friend
For our operatic spree,
Puccini, beer and popcorn,
Giacomo, Max and Me.

How he loved the sound of opera,
And he never could disguise,
The touch of “Butterfly’s” lament,
I’d see mist hang in his eyes.
He would stay on thru the evening,
With his tail a beating time,
And when we howled together,
It was music most sublime.
We’d do some verse from “La Bohme”
Twas a beautiful potpourri,
La Scala would have welcomed us,
Giacomo, Max and me.

O’er the years our opera fest
Began to slow it’s beat.
Max’s ears began to go,
Soon, hard to keep his feet.
He quit his brew and popcorn,
His eyes could barely see.
I felt the pact might soon dissolve
The magic of us three.

The day before our opera,
The vet said there’s no cure,
With love and wishful thinking,
He still could not endure.
While I hummed some “Nessum Dorma”
I let the Doctor do his deed,
As we said our last goodbyes,
I sensed his soul was freed.
Max’s tail was slowly beating,
To his last Puccini score,
I watched it slow, then sadly stop,
And then it beat no more.
He passed on to a better place,
Sans pain and misery.
But Saturday night is empty now,
No Giacomo, no Max,…..just me.

The last command performance,
Would have made Max very proud.
A lot of booze, and crinkled notes,
n’ played the CD’s much too loud
I slobbered thru the passages,
Assured no one would see
My pouring beer and pouring tears,
For Giacomo, Max, from Me.

Too soon the house lights brightened
The stage, again was my abode,
And I took my final curtain call
Face down in the commode.
I stumbled to the bedroom,
And dreamed of ‘used to be’
My mind was swiftly swept away,
To Giacomo, Max and me

I dreamt he’s on Puccini’s lap,
Beneath a popcorn tree.
And Callas sings Musetta’s theme
As only could Marie.
Then Caruso wails Piagliacci’s grief,
As Max howls right on key.
harmonizing with new friends,
as he waits there, for me.
Be it decades, years, or just next week,
Whenever it may be;
I’ll see his tail still beating time,
As he greets his tenor wanna be.
To blend again, as once before,
Giacomo, Max and Me


  1. Hi Tom,

    Sooo sorry for your loss. We have, and have had, and have lost, pets who are revered members of our family. I always blanche at that joke “Life begins when the kids are up and out and the dog dies.” In some superficial way, it is true, it may be easier, but at what cost? As you usually do, you handled this with great aplomb and made it worth sharing, for you and your friends alike.


  2. Hi Ron,

    Thank you for your kind words. We’re trying to adjust to things we don’t have to do anymore…

  3. Thanks for posting my poem, Tom. I’ve tried a few times to recite it at various open mikes, and find myself still choking and misting up as I tried to go through it.. And as you know old paratroopers just don’t look good doing that. But I am sure somewhere out there, Max would be very proud right now……thanks again…and again, very very sorry for your loss..Fred Moore

    • Hey, if you didn’t choke and mist up, you’d not be human–or at least the kind of human I like.

  4. I’m so sorry for your loss, Tom. It’s so hard to say goodbye to our canine friends… Warmest wishes, Aaron

  5. Thanks, Aaron. Means a lot for friends to recognize the loss.

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