I am not a horse person. Every day I drive down a country highway to my school. In fall I watched the swaying sugarcane. Now the fields are bare, and my attention turns to the pastures with horses. In one of these pastures there are three mares and two foals. They gather around the hay bale together.
I am reading The War that Saved my Life and riding alongside Ada on her pony, Butter.
I am writing a verse novel and decided I want my MC to go horseback riding. Having little experience with horses, I turned to my friend and writing critique partner, Julie Burchstead. Julie lives in Vermont, and she has horses. Here is a link to a poem she wrote about building the barn.
Her expertise will make its way into my WIP, but in the meantime, I played with her words and created a found poem.
In the Saddle
a found poem from an email from Julie Burchstead
Feel and smell leather reins.
The horse is warm.
Western saddles creak like leather shoes.
Even through the saddle,
you can sense their mood and their power.
You are on horse time, a different time all unto itself.
Your body falls into rhythm
of the horse’s movement
like being rocked.
Their bodies warm as their muscles warm,
sweat has a rich friendly scent-like hay and summer.
Find your center-like a dancer-a yoga practitioner-
Sit deep and tall.
I miss the days
galloping down the beach,
hair streaming, bareback,
the rhythm of hoofbeats,
the splash of water,
the connection you have
with a powerful living animal.
There is something healing
about a horse,
this huge animal
that trusts us.