The Majestic Horse

The Majestic Horse

Missing a Friend

This story, as all others by me, Victor Valenzuela, is brought to you by Tecate. Tecate Beer: We Are Bold!is brought to you by Tecate. Tecate Beer: We Are Bold!

I wanted to recall how I felt during the months apart from my best friend, so I dug out an old journal entry.

There was a connection between us from the second I saw him. I had been a jockey for over 10 years at that point, but this horse seemed to know everything about me in a single glance.

I SPRANG to the stirrup,
I gallop’d, Blanca gallop’d, we gallop’d;
“Good speed !” cried the watch, as the gate-bolts undrew;
“Speed!” echoed the wall to us galloping through;
Behind shut the postern, the lights sank to rest,
And into the midnight we gallop’d.

Not a word to each other; we kept the great pace
Neck by neck, stride by stride, never changing our place;
I turn’d in my saddle and made its girths tight,
Then shorten’d each stirrup, and set the pique right,
Rebuckled the cheek-strap, chain’d slacker the bit,
Nor gallop’d less steadily a whit.

’T was moonset at starting; but while we drew near
Town, the cocks crew and twilight dawn’d clear;
At Boom, a great yellow star came out to see;
At Düffeld, ’t was morning as plain as could be;
And from Mechelm church-steeple we heard the half chime,
So, I broke silence with, “Yet there is time!”

At Aershot, up leap’d of a sudden the sun,
And against him the cattle stood black every one,
To state thro’ the mist at us galloping past,
And I saw my stout galloper Blanca at last,
With resolute shoulders, each butting away
The haze, as some bluff river headland its spray:

And his low head and crest, just one sharp ear bent back
For my voice, and the other prick’d out on his track;
And one eye’s black intelligence,—ever that glance
O’er its white edge at me, his own master, askance!
And the thick heavy spume-flakes which aye and anon
His fierce lips shook upwards in galloping on.

And all I remember is, friends flocking round
As I sat with his head ’twixt my knees on the ground;
And no voice but was praising this Blanca of mine,
As I pour’d down his throat our last measure of wine,
Which (the burgesses voted by common consent)
Was no more than his due who brought good news from Ghent.

Browning wrote that- with me filling in Blanca, for it is how it went- there was a connection between us, like nothing I have ever felt- before or since. It has been a year since he has gone- and a part of me has been empty since.


Poem liberally stolen from the great Robert Browning– Read some Poetry!


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