Note: please listen to the poem here: https://soundcloud.com/gina-marselle/glory/s-RBmKOssZVEB
There was a time before I loved horses.
I was so little then,
I probably had a made up name for horse.
By the time I was 7 or 8, that is all I talked about.
Soon, my soul transformed into a horse.
I had a best friend horse, a soulmate before I turned 10.
Santa brought her, and we were inseparable for 16 years.
Her hoofbeats summoned my dreams,
we galloped into a love not of this earth.
Ancient like the desert sands.
Horses became a mantra for breath.
Then, I only dreamed for 20 some years.
Now, a daughter raised, a son who is 9,
I have this rescue horse that
isn’t a dream, he breathes fire
into my heart.
He’s desert bound with the clear, blue sky as his kingdom.
This afternoon, I felt most lost to myself.
When I get like this, when my anxiety is about to break me,
I drive to Edgewood. As soon as I pull into the stable,
I see the horses.
When I close my car door, I can already hear my horse
nickering his greeting. Shaking his head. Trotting in his paddock.
His tail raised high telling everyone that he is an Arabian horse.
The color of midnight.
His nicker makes his body quiver. His hello is for me—or for carrots.
Today, he gets a giant Honeycrisp apple
and leftover, bruised pears my son didn’t eat during the week.
I try to remember life is lovely. Days are blessings.
On days that I forget,
I take a drive to Edgewood.
to find that little girl I use to be.
She was brave, courageous. She had a loud laugh.
She rode bareback and galloped over the hillsides.
I don’t ride my rescue horse.
I don’t have that courage anymore.
Instead, I dream we are running wild across the desert landscape.
We are one as we chase the wind, leaving plumes of dust
in our wake. The sun sits warm on our backs.
My mother died last September. I have been a little lost.
My husband moved out last October.
I became a little more lost.
COVID-19 never left. I became a little more lost.
My horse doesn’t understand his job,
but his therapy keeps my heart beating.
In my dreams, we gallop until the suns and stars meet in glory.
This says to the world more than any poem,
that I am before all else a lover of horses.
In my soul, my bloodstream. My very heart beat.
Fascinating is that a human heart and a horse’s heart
can begin to synchronize within 35 feet of each other.
The only thing closer, I think,
is when the mother is pregnant with her child.
God knew before I was born,
that my spirit belonged to the horse.
My mother loved horses.
My mother’s mother loved horses.
I love horses.
I'm a protector of them.
I believe this love will be the last memory of mine,
as my final breath leaves my body.
I hope that as I enter into the next light, I am granted
a steed to ride the stars wildly and happily.
If a shooting star you see, call me Joy as my hands
merge into one with the fire mane of my horse’s light.
My laugh will be loud. My smile wide.
I will send light.
And my loved ones will know joy.
© Gina Marselle, January 8, 2022
Note: This poem was inspired by a writing prompt shared by Liza Wolf Frances (https://saturdays-sirens.com/liza-wolff-francis/). We read a poem by Lisa Fay Coutley called: Letter to the Aftermath. We created a word bank to use in a poem we wrote. My word bank from Coutley’s poem was as follows: heart shape, fall, leaves, 73 °, sunny, plumes of white clouds, desert, mountain, chickens, dirt, son, leaves, tomatoes, horse snort, sun and stars, warm air, peaches, bruised pears, apples and dust. To learn more about the poet, visit here: https://lisafaycoutley.com/poems/.