Recently I had the honor of memorializing Rocky, Dan's wife's beloved dog who is no longer with them, in a 16x20 oil painting on canvas. Dan commissioned me to create this special gift for his wife for Christmas. Dan expressed to me that there was a poem titled the Rainbow Bridge that he wanted to incorporate in the portrait. The poem is about what happens to the four-legged members of our family once they have passed on.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to the Rainbow Bridge.
There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.
There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.
The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.
They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.
You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.
Then you cross the Rainbow Bridge together.
I was honored to paint Rocky's portrait while incorporating the Rainbow Bridge. The photo that Dan gave me to work from is above at the beginning of the post. Thank you, Dan, for letting me be a part of this special gift. Here's the finished portrait.