I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

21 April 2010

Looking Back, Far and Near

When I rode with Genghis Khan
the horses were short and tough.
My horse was my friend.
Now I am a woman, an old woman,
and I have never sat a horse.

When I was little I rode on the hoof
of Horace, the draught-horse
in my grandfather’s orchard,
standing on it and clasping his leg.
He was my only horse friend this time.

When I rode with my brothers
as a Mongol warrior, I wore
a helmet with leather earflaps
and a cap of fur over that.
Now I hate wearing hats.

When I was a little girl, my mother
put me in cotton sunbonnets
with shady brims and big neck flaps
because I was fair and might burn.
She sewed them herself.

When I galloped across the Steppes
with axe and sword and bow
I was not afraid. I knew battle
and my horse helped me. My brothers
were all around me. It was good.

In my life here and now,
I was always a timid child
and couldn’t handle my body
to turn a somersault or ride a bike.
I hated raised voices and confrontation.

Now is better, I believe. I can fight
if I have to. And I can think well
to avoid it. I wear what I choose.
I like driving my red car.
I make poems. I pet my cats.

Yet, lover of hills and trees, sometimes
I imagine sweeping across the plain
on the back of my sturdy horse,
or remember not being afraid
of a huge, gentle Clydesdale
touching who I was.

April PAD Challenge 20
Prompt (1) Looking Back.

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