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On Max's inauguration day, July 1, 2012, emcee Marshall Smith read this poem he wrote for the occasion.


I am four-legged

By Marshall Smith


I am four-legged,

descended from powerful prides and predatory packs,

rulers of our own dominions.


I have walked with you now for thousands of years

from your campfires to your farms to your cities.

Once fiercely independent, I have grown compliantly dependent.

Once wary and aloof, I now rush to the sound of your voice.


When you leave, my only thought is your return.

Nothing is more important.

When you are happy with me, I rejoice and frolic

Nothing is more important.


When you are frightened, sad or ill,

I remain at your side, ready to protect, ready to comfort, ready to heal.

If you die or discard me, my world, in all that is important, comes to an end.


I then wait with fear for what may come next.

Will someone else love me as you have?


I am four-legged.

Look into my eyes and see the long road I have traveled to be with you.

Look into my eyes and see my ancient and regal past.

Look into my eyes and see, always, my love.


I am four-legged. I have had many names.

But the name of which I am most proud, the one I prize most is

Friend, your friend, your always friend.





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