Photo & Poem: Reluctant

  Stay outside until the sun is low, reluctant to let the day end, tidying halters, raking loose hay into stalls, dragging my feet. Not ready. Just that this sweet ordinary day, this warm season, will soon be carried off in the wind, gone to seed. Loosening my grip from what I know will be … Read more

Photo & Poem: A Donkey’s Years

  His bray begins with a shallow panting, as he aligns the end of his nose level with his back, his ears splay flat as the horizon. Then his ribs spread wide, gasping more air in and sounding the long exhale, punctuated by the flexing of his belly muscles for a prodigious honking howl, as … Read more

The Thing About Mares

When Larry McMurtry wrote Lonesome Dove, he gave Woodrow Call’s gray mare a blunt name that was rudely respectful, in a close-as-kin way. Being a sort of gray mare myself, the name stuck in my memory. Some folks hate mares so much they refuse to have them on the place. Others praise them to the … Read more

Be-Here-Now: Focus on the Task

Does your horse get restless or bored when standing with you? Does he pull the rope, trying to graze when you are busy? Am I going to blame you for that, too? I was asked to share a pet peeve, which seems like inviting a donkey to a dinner party, but I’ll try to keep … Read more

The Horse Trainer and the Dermatologist.

My gray mare calming signals included squinty eyes, a dry mouth, and a weird chicken-like movement with my neck and head. Every now and then one of my naked feet would kick out. Breathing? Not noticeably. If there is a medical visit I like even less than a mammogram, it’s going to the dermatologist. I … Read more

Learning to Let Go: Pearl

She arrived at Infinity Farm unceremoniously. We moved a fence panel, backed the rig in close, and she pretty much fell out the back of the trailer. That was good news; they weren’t sure she’d survive the trip. It isn’t my intention to cue a circle of hand wringing, sympathy is not the goal. If … Read more

Photo & Poem: Finding Voice

  “Curiosity is a sign of courage,” she said, hushing my correction. Bright praise for my colt chasing her dog along a fence line. That colt grew old and died, funeral respect gladly paid to a fine mentor, and now that mortality hangs around my ankles, I’ve grown stubborn, looking both ways before ranting, not … Read more