Ollie and Shadows: What Do We Make of Them?

After being at Skygate Farm a couple of weeks, I had begun noticing things moving on the ground, yet there was nothing of substance there. I know, it sounds weird. Skygate Farm has multiple wide-open fields beyond the yard surrounding the house. It was mostly in the yard and fields where these things that weren’t really things would appear.

Version 2
(James’ shadow watching on the side of a field at Skygate Farm.)

Before coming to live with James and Ron I’d never noticed these things that weren’t there, so at first they surprised me. Once James noticed that I was interested in them, he told me that they were shadows. They still didn’t make any sense to me. Then James explained that light sources, like the sun, full moon and indoor lights, caused shadows of objects to appear.

There were only a few things I liked better than trying to catch these shadows. They were beyond elusive. It made no sense to me that I could never, ever get one in my paws or mouth. Still, it was fun trying. It would wear me out, and I would sleep peacefully for hours. Well, nowhere near all night yet, but still for a good hour or more. James loved seeing me chasing all the different shadows I began to notice.

Version 3
(Ollie’s shadow following him on the driveway at Skygate Farm.)

Once I understood that the objects were real, but the shadows were nothing more than reflections or negatives, so to speak, of the objects, I decided to leave them alone. Still, that took some time for me to understand. Now, don’t go thinking that I’m not smart. Remember, I was only a puppy. There is that expression about throwing off puppy behaviors when becoming a dog.

Because of my interest in shadows, James wrote a short poem about it. We thought you might enjoy reading it. When James reads it to me now, it seems as if I was a silly little puppy. After I told James that, he told me that it took a very special puppy to even notice shadows. James is so good to me, don’t you think?

Well, without further ado, here is the poem….


            arrangements of wispy vased buds
dancing across the white of the wall
            catch your eye

            traveling sights of human forms
parading around the slate on the floor
            intrigue you

            shimmers from seasonal tree leaves
vibrating on the concrete pavement

            fluttering arms and head
rotating on the bark of a tree
            cause bewilderment

            hovering creations of you and me
floating at night on the meadow’s incline
            give surprise

            shadows are a puzzling fascination
captivating you at twelve weeks

finding them as a new type of toy
            yet can neither be touched nor chewed

There are still times when James and I are out and a shadow will cause me to bark. It can take me a minute or two to figure out that what is there is not truly there. I know, that sounds funny, but it’s true.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this story and poem. In two weeks I’ll tell you about James’ experiences with patience when I was a puppy. Now the poem he wrote is all about him. Please stay tuned and read it and the others to follow.

Also, let us know your opinion of these stories and the poems James wrote. I always like to hear from you, so please feel free to leave me a comment about this or anything else that’s on your mind.

Until next time,
Short Stories - Author Webpage Help Needed
Sir Oliver of Skygate Farm (you can call me Ollie)


Paw Prints courtesy of www.pawsitivelyloved.com
All photos © James Stack 2017 unless otherwise indicated

4 thoughts on “Ollie and Shadows: What Do We Make of Them?

  1. A new word for James. He had to ask me what a wyrmling is. And here I thought he knew everything. We learn something new every day. Just sayin’ – and I’m sayin’ hello to Dragon.


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