the horse


The Horse

The wind licks at the nape of my neck.
It twists my hair into wild tangles.
High above me the sun radiates through the cold,
burning the ash and the dust I breathe.
I am alone.
It is quiet, except for the wind.
The grass, dry and brown, is brittle.
Large stones litter the field.
A horse in the distance whinnies,
a sound high and small.
It stands alone too,
under the tall oak tree on the hill
whose branches are mostly bare.
I stand still.
I watch.
I breathe.
The horse, small and black, sees me.
Its ears flick to attention,
tail and mane moving with the wind.
It thrusts its nose into the air,
Its breath is fog against the sky.
I watch. I breathe.
The black horse approaches,
warily, slowly.
I take one step, then two.
The world waits between us, silent,
I stand still.
It watches.
We breathe.
The black horse stretches its neck,
wobbling in the wind on wary legs.
I reach out my hand,
palm toward the sky.
I feel the velvet of its nose,
the heat of its breath against my palm.
A tree branch snaps,
caught in the wind.
The horse turns suddenly and gallops away,
snorting and throwing its head,
back to the tree.
It stands watching now.
I am still.
Together we breathe.


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