Long Dark Night of the Soul: Colic

Andante’s nickering. I’ve pulled the hay out of his run and swept the mats. He has a baritone voice, a make-out music, bad boy nicker. He drops a hip, under his breath, “Hay, b-baby.” No, he can’t have any for a while. I’d rather have a knife to my neck than see a horse with … Read more

It Could Be Worse. You Could Be Married to Me.

“Honey, when you’re in town will you pick something up for me?” I don’t quite wait for the answer. “Great, three bags of quikrete, please. The eighty-pounders.” I was asked to write something for the men who read my blog. Grab your caps, boys, this might get bumpy. For the rest of you, dear readers, … Read more

Cantankary: If Not Now, When?

Expecting New Year’s resolutions from me? Nope, I’m not the type. I am so thrilled to have survived another year that I’m holding on for all I’m worth. Not giving up anything. Running like the devil is on my tail. I even get windburn when I’m typing at the computer. That’s when it happened. Just … Read more

The Future for Horse-Keepers: Isolation or World Change?

It’s what we do: We keep horses. Sometimes a foal too young to be ridden, so we show patience and keep them. Sometimes it’s adult horses with flawless training and good minds, and while we practice the art of riding, we keep them. Too often we get horses who have been damaged by harsh handling, … Read more

Part One: The Future for Horses, a Different Narrative about Herd Dynamics

The first story I remember about herd dynamics was that stallions lived on the rise above the valley to watch for danger and protect the herd. The mares and foals grazed like idle, hapless creatures while the business of the herd went on between a dominant stallion and young stallions fought to take his place. … Read more

Life Coach: The Goat Version

It was a beautiful end-of-summer afternoon, just about feeding time. Cupid had been with us for almost a year by then. He was an elder foster horse having a great summer in that precious way that makes you quiet inside. Cupid never expected much or asked for special treatment. He’d been used hard and not … Read more

Do Horses Fear Death?

  It’s been an ordinary year. Animals died here. What could be more normal? Infinity Farm has an extended herd and none of us are youngsters anymore. Over the months, we said goodbye to a boney old Tabby Cat, an ancient foster horse, a young neurologic donkey foster, and a beautiful mare. Aren’t all mares … Read more

Photo and Poem: What If?

  There is a crisp apple coolness to the air. Soon there will be frost, I tell the horses, soon the flies will be gone. The northern air makes the herd buck and snort steam, but might as well be blood on the wind for elders bearing heavy mortality, unable to catch the air, joints … Read more

Photo & Poem: Faraway Friends

  I would show you the adolescent Canada geese on the pond. Better behaved than we ever would have been, they stay close, like Catholic school girls in prim uniforms between their parents in church. We would give them names like Cecelia and Mary Margaret and Bridget, us standing by the donkey, scratching his ears … Read more

Be-Here-Now: Focus on Safety (Helmets and Response Time)

  You’re standing in a tennis court just behind the baseline, being mildly uncomfortable in your tennis togs because the glare off your legs, like any good horsewoman’s, is near blinding. Right about then, a bullet whizzes by your ear. You know it was a tennis ball, point to the server. Taking a few strides … Read more