Treasure Island

Greg Davidson

(1954 / Sydney, Australia)

Black Dog


A black dog follows me,
No collar nor a lead,
Its form I can not measure,
Of undetermined breed.

A black dog followed me,
My step a merry gait,
Then it left me quite alone,
I pondered not its fate.

A black dog followed me
It disappeared a while
But it did return again
When I had gone a mile.

A black dog follows me,
My companion I'll ignore,
My tread a steady onward march,
My eyes fixed to the fore.

A black dog follows me,
It matters not what pace.
My steps are clear upon the path,
Its paws, they leave no trace.

A black dog follows me,
No others on the road.
No muse, companion, mentor, friend,
I've none to share my load.

A black dog follows me,
Like a shadow by my side.
Storm clouds dim my path.
But it will not be my guide.

A black dog follows me,
Nipping at my heel.
Anxiety eats me from within.
I question what is real.


A black dog follows me,
No interest in my tears.
With hollow smile it follows me
And catalogues my fears.

A black dog follows me.
Steeper grows the grade.
My resolution falters,
My strength begins to fade.

A black dog follows me,
Though it will not choose my end.
I set my face into the wind,
My sanity to defend.

A black dog follows me.
I know I must resist.
I will not, must not, yield to him
I know I must persist

A black dog follows me.
Before me is my goal.
Silent prayers I send above,
My Lord to keep me whole

A black dog follows me.
And though the road does rise,
Onwards I intend to go
Until I reach the prize.


2012

Submitted: Wednesday, May 09, 2012
Edited: Tuesday, May 28, 2013

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  • Mark Sauer (6/25/2013 10:07:00 PM)

    Black dog is what Winston Churchill called the periodic depression to which he was prone. Same metaphor? (Report) Reply

  • Bri Edwards (5/27/2013 11:46:00 PM)

    greg, well, is it temptation or depression or something else i wonder. (see previous comments by other readers) i don't really care what it is; i enjoyed the poem enough to send it to my poemlist. thanks for sharing.
    i liked the change from followed to follows. bri p.s. i always enjoy good rhymes. (Report) Reply

  • Anjali Sinha (4/20/2013 6:55:00 PM)

    A lovely poem- -I guess the black dog is temptation- -and not yielding to it until you reach the prize - heaven. Very nice- -reminds what my grandpa would always say I will not, must not, yield to him
    I know I must persist
    ++10
    regards Anjali (Report) Reply

  • John Brown (9/3/2012 9:34:00 AM)

    Good poem Greg. I wrote one called 'Depression' which, I guess, is what yours is about - or something similar. (Report) Reply

  • Valerie Dohren (5/20/2012 7:00:00 AM)

    Very good poem, well written - you may like to read mine entitled The Shadow which I suspect has similar meaning. (Report) Reply

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