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The Rainbow Bridge (inspired by Norse legend)

rainbow bridge

The Rainbow Bridge (inspired by a Norse legend)

By the edge of a woods, at the foot of a hill,
Is a lush, green meadow where time stands still.
Where the friends of man and woman do run,
When their time on earth is over and done.
For here, between this world and the next,
Is a place where each beloved creature finds rest.
On this golden land, they wait and they play,
Till the Rainbow Bridge they cross over one day.
No more do they suffer, in pain or in sadness,
For here they are whole, their lives filled with gladness.
Their limbs are restored, their health renewed,
Their bodies have healed, with strength imbued.
They romp through the grass, without even a care,
Until one day they start, and sniff at the air.
All ears prick forward, eyes dart front and back,
Then all of a sudden, one breaks from the pack.
For just at that instant, their eyes have met;
Together again, both person and pet.
So they run to each other, these friends from long past,
The time of their parting is over at last.
The sadness they felt while they were apart,
Has turned into joy once more in each heart.
They embrace with a love that will last forever,
And then, side-by-side, they cross over… together.

The Rainbow Bridge was originally inspired from a Norse poem used to help the Danes mourn the loss of their beloved animals. It can be especially helpful to read poems when grieving for a pet.

This is another popular version:

Crossing the Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to 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 Rainbow Bridge together…

8 thoughts on “The Rainbow Bridge (inspired by Norse legend)

  1. Reply
    Kenneth Ward - August 27, 2023

    Yesterday my friend of 20 years, Zeke by loving cat. I watch Zeke as a younger cat jump and romp through the trees, enjoying his freedom and the outdoors. I watch, as he grew older, need me to carry him into the house, blind and hard to hear. Yesterday I watch Zeke, my friend die in my arms, age 23 years. The pain is terrible but hopefully some day I’ll cross the Rainbow Bridge with my friend.

    1. Reply
      Karen Martin - August 29, 2023

      Oh Kenneth I’m so sorry to hear about Zeke. How beautiful to have shared such a wonderful friendship. Sending you lots of love and support. Remember to take care of yourself, grief can be very tough xxx

      1. Reply
        Mercedes Pernas - November 7, 2023

        So so sorry for your loss Karen. I’m sure the pain is still in your heart. Remember l blessed you were to have each other

        1. Reply
          Karen Martin - December 5, 2023

          I will always cherish the time we were able to spend together, thank you for your kind words

  2. Reply
    Tony Ogle - March 19, 2023

    I lost my lil canine brother 4wks ago. These poems have given me much comfort

    1. Reply
      Karen Martin - March 28, 2023

      I’m so very sorry to hear about your dog, I’m glad we’ve been able to help just a little bit. Do take care of yourself, pet grief is not an easy journey xx

  3. Reply
    Barry - July 1, 2022

    I love these two poems. I lost my best petfriend Noa 4 weeks ago. She was the whole world to me. I lived for her and now I feel so alone and lost without her. It’s good to know she is waiting for me. And I would love to go and see her real fast. Tell her how much I love her. But I know I have to wait. I know she is over there and still the most lovely dog between midgard and asgard. I’m looking forward to the day we both cross the rainbow bridge together.

    1. Reply
      Karen Martin - November 1, 2022

      Thank you for sharing Barry and my deepest condolences for Noa. Our pets will always be there for us, wherever we are. Take care

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