Madathil Rajendran Nair

Gold Star - 28,333 Points (3rd December 1946 / Bombay, India)

Man's Best Friend - Poem by Madathil Rajendran Nair

Rain clouds ran berserk on the hills
Like elephant herds in panic
Winds whistled like villains
On the winding mountain pass

A warm tea would do me good
I stopped my car and moved
Towards a dilapidated shed
Where men of all shades
Huddled together puffing beedies

He came after me then
His eyes had a moist glisten
Of ageless friendship
Wagging his tail looking up
At me, placing his paws on my thighs

Stray dog of the mountain pass
His eyes were mascara lined
A beauty to behold
A silky brownness filled with mirth
And wavy musculature

What does he like?
Anything, Sir, that we have here
I bought him a sweet bun
He gulped it at once
Wagging his tail again
Ageless camaraderie in his eyes

I bought him a second bun
Before I drained
The last drops of my steaming tea
Made from what God knows
On that forsaken mountain pass

And as I walked back to my car
In an elemental swirl
Of winds, drizzle, mist and clouds
He was there behind me
With that haunting friendship in his eyes

Friend, our knowing each other
Is perhaps endless
It never had a beginning either
We were together through ages
Births, rebirths, deaths and pangs

Perhaps, you guarded my Neanderthal cave
When I snored inside
Looking at the Moon and wondering
Why the world was made
So beautiful to behold

Or perhaps you sat there in the snow
Outside my igloo freezing
Looked at the white expanse and mused
Why it had to be so awesome
When it bit into the bones
And stiffened the looks even
Of the stars in the heavens

Adieu friend, we are to meet
Again and again in our sojourns
Keep the friendship burning
In your moist eyes, sure am I
You will be there when I breathe
My last on some mountain pass
Sitting at my head, man’s best friend
What more would a human want?

Topic(s) of this poem: friendship

Form: Prose Poem

Poet's Notes about The Poem

Based on a real life incident when the friendship of a dog on a mountain road on a rainy, cold and windy evening baffled me.

Comments about Man's Best Friend by Madathil Rajendran Nair

  • (6/5/2018 6:24:00 AM)

    One of your best poems, both in English and Malayalam, Madathil Nair (Report) Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Akhtar Jawad (9/8/2016 9:16:00 AM)

    A lovely poem on a lovely friend. (Report) Reply

    Madathil Rajendran Nair (9/8/2016 11:26:00 AM)

    Thanks. This too is a double honour!

  • (9/7/2016 12:35:00 PM)

    Great poem on the eternal friendship between man and the canine. But the following lines impress me:
    You will be there when I breathe
    My last on some mountain pass
    Sitting at my head, man’s best friend
    What more would a human want? These lines remind me of the last sojourn of Dharmatutra (the seniormost Pandava-of epic Mahabharat) .

    It is written that, when the Pandavas embarked upon the Mahaprasthana (sojourn) , a dog joined them. As the journey progressed, starting from Droupaty (the wife of the Pandavas) , one by one, fell on the way. And Dharmaptura continued his journey, when Gods descended to take him with them to heaven. He, however insisted that he would go with Them, only if the dog is also allowed to accompany. Finally, when Gods yielded, to his chagrin, he found out that the dog was none other than God Dharmadeva, his father. So goes the story.

    The poem as such is reflective of this epical story. I am grateful to you for sharing this exquisite poem.
    (Report) Reply

    (9/7/2016 8:22:00 PM)

    Thiruvannamalai is a shrine which I loved to visit. We lived in Chennai for 11 years and had visited on many occasions and made the round on the pournami nights too. It is really an enchanting spiritual experience. The experience similar to yours have been recounted by many of my friends and realatives. But I never had; May be I was not pious enough to acquire the benevolence of Lord Siva.

    Madathil Rajendran Nair (9/7/2016 3:15:00 PM)

    I have read that story of a dog following Dharmaputra. However, that wasn't in mind when I penned this poem. This is based on a true incident which occurred somewhere beyond Walayar en route Coimbatore. The only change is that I made it an unfriendly mountain-pass. Thanks for reading new meaning into my poem. A dog had followed me for about 14 km when I was going round the holy mount of Thiruvannamalai, (one round is 15 km) where Bh. Ramana Maharshi spent his life-time and attained mahaasamaadhi. The pious there believe that such dogs are not ordinary but siddhaas. I don't know. But the dog's behaviour baffled me despite my usual rationalizing. I would now like to believe that he was a siddha!

  • Tapan M. Saren (8/8/2016 10:07:00 AM)

    Very very very beautiful poem..10 (Report) Reply

  • Nosheen Irfan (7/19/2016 2:14:00 AM)

    What a marvelous write on friendship! Your description of the mountain pass, n the weather is sublime. And in that lovely background, the sparks of love, loyalty n friendship are ignited. On the emotional level, this poem stirs the heart of every reader, i'm sure. The love that an animal feels n nurtures for a human who is kind to him surpasses every emotion. Beautiful narration of a memorable incident. Full marks! (Report) Reply

  • Rajnish Manga (7/7/2016 2:22:00 AM)

    Breath-taking and surreal. The narrative is fantastically interesting as well as emotional. The eternal bond of friendship felt with a stray dog during a short period of time lasting barely an hour or so of halt on a journey by road. You have made it a philosophical experience. Thanks, Nair ji. (Report) Reply

  • Denis Mair (2/21/2016 10:14:00 AM)

    This poem made a strong impression on me when I first began exploring PoemHunter eight months ago. Stumbling across gems like this convinced me to stay with PH. The storm is described in film-scenario style. We can visualize the stormy desolation and how comforting the dog's presence must have been. There are authentic touches, such as wondering what the tea was made from on that Godforsaken mountain pass. We are seeing through the poet's eyes. He imagines himself wondering about the beauty of the moon and intensity of winter cold in other eras. It seems natural that such reflections would be enhanced by the presence of a companion. This poem evokes the mystery of friendship across species. (Report) Reply

  • Akhtar Jawad (7/31/2015 11:27:00 PM)

    A nice description of a loyal and faithful friend................................10 (Report) Reply

  • Howard 'the motivational poet' Simon (5/11/2015 5:53:00 PM)

    An eminent and excellent exposition that moves the mondaine to majestic magnification. Well done my friend! (Report) Reply

  • (3/31/2015 6:38:00 AM)

    Being a lover of all animals I love this poem and owning the most beautiful dog on the planet named Jet Star and his undying love...the story was great...regards (Report) Reply

  • Abdulrazak Aralimatti (3/28/2015 12:51:00 AM)

    Truly said, dog is man's good friend and man has to learn a lot from it. (Report) Reply

  • Jitesh Shah (3/22/2015 11:17:00 AM)

    very nice poem for best friend i like it and also read my poem sir (Report) Reply

  • Rajesh Thankappan (3/20/2015 11:22:00 AM)

    Dog shares an intimate relationship with man and this relationship you have so beautifully woven in this poem. (Report) Reply

  • Edward Kofi Louis (3/20/2015 7:47:00 AM)

    Keep the firendship. A nice piece of work. (Report) Reply

  • (3/19/2015 12:34:00 AM)

    Excellent work! You could have brought the friend home. '......we are to meet again and again in our sojourns....' R.C.Nair (Report) Reply

  • Amitava Sur (3/18/2015 10:32:00 PM)

    Truly a lovely endearing poem with a heart winning imagery showing your love for your trusted friend in deed. (Report) Reply

  • (3/18/2015 12:37:00 PM)

    I felt as though I was reading a poem by famous Malayalm poets like Kumaran Asan, al.
    Really beautiful work!
    (Report) Reply

  • Tirupathi Chandrupatla (3/18/2015 9:58:00 AM)

    A real life incident is beautifully presented all the reality preserved. It is wonderful experience to find man's best friend in journey on the mountain road. Great imagination and appropriate choice of words. Enjoyed it. Thank you. (Report) Reply

  • Valsa George (3/18/2015 7:08:00 AM)

    What should I say about this write! Splendid! Yes, I see your friend's mascara lined eyes in the picture!

    Perhaps, you guarded my Neanderthal cave
    When I snored inside
    Looking at the Moon and wondering
    Why the world was made
    So beautiful to behold............................. Lovely imagination Nair ji! Top marks as usual!
    (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, March 18, 2015

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