"Mom, why do pets have to die?" asked Willem.
"It's sad, but all living things die," said Mom as she put her arm around Willem's shoulder. "There are things you can do to help yourself feel better. I like to write about the one who is gone."
"You mean you make up a story about the person?" asked Willem as he sat up straighter to look at his mother.
"I'm sure you could do that," said Mom. "What I was thinking of was to write down memories so you won't forget Skipper. You could also write a poem about him."
"Poems are too hard," said Willem, shaking his head. "They have to rhyme, and they have too many rules."
"I think you might be surprised about that," said Mom. "There are many kinds of poems; some don't rhyme. What they do is speak from the heart. Some are happy, but many are sad. Maybe we could work on a poem together."
"Could we? I'll get some paper and a pencil!" said Willem.
When he returned, Willem and his mother sat down at the kitchen table.