• HL Thompson, Blue Phoenix

Part 2 - My LOVE Story...

I didn't expect that my wish for LOVE would be met so quickly, and it wasn't' in the human form of eros that had consumed my thinking at the time. Instead, my lifelong dream - a warmblood...a warhorse - entered my life within days of blowing out the candles. IThe grace of God arrived in a pasture, covered in dirt, with a tiny badass trainer named Kiri. I felt stunned into silence; LOVE was so much bigger (literally and figuratively) than anything I ever have imagined...LOVE was HARVEY.


"Born a Warhorse"













I didn't know it was the last time I would bury my face Into his warm brown hair He smelled of honey and earth. Nostrils flared with tender skin Gently pressing on my temple Course whiskers tickle my neck Soft white lips nuzzle my ear Twitching back and forth Grasping a tiny bit of hair Tucked into a banded bun As if searching within blades of grass  For the perfect tendrils  To snap with his powerful jaws.  Harvey dreamed of grazing Eyes wide at the abundant green A cruel arthritic fate For a former Grand Prix Jumper... But he hadn't been able to  R.   E.    A.    C.    H The ground in months. His frozen neck Made my chronic pain seem frivolous And TEETH! Powerful jaws filled his dinosaur face Yet the teeth they held Had nothing left to give.  No more masticating bites. No more drops of 8 flakes a day... Yes 8 flakes! So much hay Just to keep weight on him. No grass No oats Water buckets lifted up So he could drink... Expert vet care State of the art automatic feeding system... SO MUCH Equine Senior... For such a big boy... "It's time to start thinking about when..." I knew what they were going to say Only Trainer was allowed to Talk with me about the end... "He will tell me," I said quivering. Truthfully, I was making a big assumption. How could I know If he would know When it was time? I have walked this road with humans, And many different small animals, But I never fulfilled the lifelong promise With a horse... Not just any horse... A heart horse - soul mate A partner in healing A former champion, like me He sustained a career ending injury Like me - Left alone in the wake of it all... We understood each other Both of us so afraid of abandonment Yet so deeply in need of genuine LOVE He chose me... I vowed to care for him unto death. We both were older now, Having had many more years Than I could have imagined. His body was rigid with arthritis, But his eyes glistened with joy The moment we saw each other. Even after choking The day before on  A small bit of pellets. He was a happy old man!  But my G-d. My G-d! Tonight... Talking with him... I realize that he's behaving  Like a starving creature  Only one focus... F O O D. Standing behind me Nuzzling my ear I recoil instantly A memory burned into my body... A reflex after the many times He pinched, pulled and Grabbed my skin with those BIG FRONT TEETH Assuming that it was clothing.  Someone before me Must have thought it was cute  To let him play with zippers.... Perhaps they didn't consider that  A very large warmblood  Would have an insatiable desire For treats...constantly searching The clothing of his people And that habit doesn't break easily. The sign on his stall read NO HAND TREATS PUT THEM IN THE BUCKET!!! People are funny... In the winter when he was thin Some would think he was starving A justification to sneak him hand treats. I always knew when someone Broke the rule... Because the day would come Usually in the spring I am in a short sleeved shirt  My forearms exposed  I put the halter on in the stall And walk him to the cross ties When suddenly Like the STRIKE of a velociraptor  Giant teeth grasp my skin Just above my elbow  I don't scream...No... I GROWL then SNARL And step right up to his BIG dinosaur face. He looks confused... Why the big reaction? I look straight into His big brown liquid eye With square pupils And sternly remind him... "Harvey...it's a BAD IDEA to bite." He drops his head to say sorry And we walk on... Without a grudge...  Because that's the way of the horse. Tonight was unlike any other night... In the February cold, dry air The fluttering of his warm breath on my ear And the twiggle of his velvet muzzle  Moving to my shoulder  Then around to face me Placing his head bowed before me Politely asking for a face rub In the center of the unusual marking Just beneath his forelock. Some called it a question mark Others saw the outline of a horse I saw something different. Harvey was magical in a way... Not childlike unicorn magic Of little girls and fantasy No... Harvey possessed the timeliness Spirit of Samurai Warriors Quiet and humble

Master of ancestral ways Fierce and powerful Born a warhorse.


In memory of Harvey - Show name"Cisco"















 
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