about sonnet

Her role is pivotal in my day of writing, so for your pleasure and “paws” I share Sonnet’s “tail” with you.

For as long as I can remember, I dreamed of a cozy companion to take long walks with and to curl up with. Especially on rainy days and with a good book.

She was born in July 2010 (thereabouts) and I met her on November 1 the same year. She is a lab retriever mix (we can only guess at the mix and lots of people do). A sweet girl. A gorgeous girl. A living, breathing, sweet, heart. Curious. Intensely playful. Loyal. So eager to learn (and by association teach, of course). And did I mention playful?

Sonnet was born in Idaho, USA. Found by an Animal Control Officer and taken to a shelter. She was found wandering around with two of her sisters. They don’t know for how long. She was skinny, her coat was dull, and she had worms. In other words, she was healthy and responsive to care.

There was no room at the shelter for more dogs, so unless homes were found immediately, these puppies were going to be shot and disposed of.

So, how does a little girl like Sonnet, along with 12 other dogs including her two sisters, get to Vancouver, BC?

They hitchhike.

There’s a network of compassionate people living everywhere who help dogs find homes that want them. They transform acts of indifference and often cruelty into compassion and social justice. When you pay an adoption fee, you’re never ‘buying’ a dog. You are funding rescue efforts and care to get dogs adopted to the best possible homes for their needs and temperament.

The shelter in Idaho fortunately had Dogwood Rescue’s phone number. Could they help find homes?

Volunteers did “legs” of travel and met up with other volunteers to transfer these adorable hitchhikers to wherever a home was available at that moment. There are no borders. The timing in all cases is divinity at work.

When Sonnet’s photo went up one morning. I thought I was just looking. Nope. I applied as soon as I saw her. Writing for my life in more ways than I could have possibly conceived of. Inspiration took over and then I let go, not wanting to stand in my own way. I didn’t want to get caught up in “how” it was all going to unfold.

Sonnet and I met in a SuperStore parking lot. She was the last one to get dropped off.

I love dogs in general for the most part, but not ever have I ever chosen a dog. Not ever have I felt chosen by a dog. Until Sonnet. This was a reminder of how everything that you really want, wants you right back. She trotted up to me as if to say: “It’s you and me babe.”

I signed papers to foster her. We’d “see how things go.” Yeah right.

Two weeks later, my man and I were signing adoption papers.

We committed to love and to receive love (not a super easy thing when she wasn’t house-trained yet).

It wasn’t until the papers were signed that I marveled at her name. She came with the name from the shelter in Idaho (along with the notation “Canada black fuzzy ears” on all her paperwork to distinguish her from the other furry hitchhikers). She didn’t know Sonnet was her name, so it carried no bad association.

We kept it. We loved it.

I loved watching her sleep. I was obviously falling in love. Was it her fuzzy ears? Was it that she wasn’t looking at the camera when her photo was taken in her online ad (so I thought she looked like a cutie, naughty pie)? I wondered why I was so drawn to her. It was then that her name struck me.

A style and type of poetry – a collection of words given structure. And I had been playing with (teetering on the brink and hoping for more courage is maybe more accurate) with the idea of writing. I was not sure that I could commit. I did not think that I had what it took. To commit. To write.

Sonnet is always with me when I write. A presence that is peaceful when there’s flow. A presence that reminds me that it’s time for “my” walk when I feel stuck.

I never understood why I yearned for a dog – believe me, I thought myself ridiculous to even use the word- yearn. If not for her I dare say, you wouldn’t be reading any of this.