On Friday, January 5, 2018, Ari the WonderDog officially turned in his Guide Dogs for the Blind harness, and became a homebody. For ten years he served me as guide and companion—attending online classes with me during my Master’s coursework, accompanying me to teach and worship at Temple Beth Sholom, flying with me to visit family and friends in St. Louis. In his honor, I am posting a poem more suited to High Holy Days.

Thanks Ari for all you continue to be in my life.




My dog Ari wears a leather leash,

and I wear leather shoes.

But not on Yom Kippor.

Then we sit together quietly and listen

To the rabbi’s teachings about important matters,

To our tradition’s teachings about life

and death

And the meaning

we must seek in between

We listen to each other

And we listen most attentively

To the heart of what we know

About ourselves

And about God.

We listen together.

And we rejoice together.

Then each goes home to her shoes,

And to his leash;

To his work,

And to her learning.

To another year

More meaningful than the last

Because we came together

To listen.


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