We live in a time that calls, cries, wails… for the touch of a mother’s hand. The balance of life upon our Earth has been upturned, and as she rolls through her bed of stars, she readies herself for new times. For so long, the way of the warrior has been all we have known, and yet now we are asked to remember our true birth, to return to the inclusive, accepting, graceful embrace of our Mother’s arms. On our way to this place, the Feminine watches her men, her fathers, her sons, her lovers as they struggle with their fight to the death, the ancient battle with fear that has led them to pass on pain as a masculine legacy from generation to generation. Can we trust that even this conflict has its purpose? Can we trust that even war brings us toward peace, that even rage teaches us of love? 

Once upon a time
there was a horse
dark and strong
he ran with the herd
never stopping
leading the flood
of dropping hooves
whole fields
of rolling thunder
their being was the chase
to and from
Their being
was freedom

And the horse
was a part of the grazing
he was a part of the
sleeping herd
and he mounted the mares
each in turn
and watched them
grow heavy with
his young

One pale morning
a foal was born
steaming wet
with eyes
huge as hooded moons
and soon the little one
stood shaking
and the horse
the stallion
stood away watching
and losing
his heart

Each day
the mare
nuzzled over her young
guiding him lovingly
and when mother and son
ran together
they cantered leg upon leg
the rhythm of the earth
they galloped
as one

The stallion screeched
his jealousy
his longing
for his son
He grew impatient
white of the eye
mane tangle
and a nostril carved
at the sight
of their oneness

Was it not he
who reared upon her back
Did not the child
also bear the phallus
Did they not
deserve to be
mirrors to one another
in the galloping times?

The sun rose
and every night
it set
The wild grass grew
and then each year
turned to seed
for new meadows
The flocks of birds rose
like windblown sheets
of wings and voices
into the sky
flapped and flapped
until they were gone
until tomorrow

The rain came
and pelted their hides
shining ink strokes                                                           
dripping to the thirsty soil
and the foal grew
to a fine colt
to a strong young horse
and he turned
in the run
just as his mother turned
and he stopped to feed
as she stopped
But one day
a new calm
was in the air
and the stallion pulled his lips
set his teeth
and called
one hoof describing
his lust
upon the ground

And his son
tail suddenly raised
heard the call
and in just a moment
only a moment
after so many seasons
of being her shadow
the male child
left his mother’s side

The Chinook came
the herd rose
as one
the time was
for moving on
And the stallion led
as he had always done
and his son
now swift as the father
turned as the stallion turned
slowed as the stallion slowed
and followed
his every

And the herd knew it was so
and they smiled                                                           
for thunder
likes thunder
and at last
the two fires raged
as twins
and the mare grieved
in her empty belly
but only for a time
She knew
that the emptiness
was now the way

The sun rose
and the sun set
and the wild grasses
grew and died
and then came
the day when
the son
sought the mares
for his own

And the father turned
upon his own son
reared tall
on massive legs
and they fought
blood of his own blood
freed upon the dust
and the mares rolled
the fear of their eyes
as shrieks rang out
over the plain

And the son
the young horse
the growing colt
the helpless foal
was driven out
of his father’s world
to find a place
in his own
and he ran one path
the herd ran the other
and his mother saw him                                      
huge against the sky                                                                    
as the stallion turned
and then saw him
no more

The herd went on
for it was the way
and whose love,
asks the heart,
was the greatest
or did love prove

The god of the horse
only watch the story
each day
and love will be found
over and over
not just in the mounting
the birthing
the thunder
but in the battle
the turning
the stealing away

None is greater
None is less
There is honour
to be found
in unsuspecting places
and this
the herd
must know…

“A Stallion’s Son” from the early poems of Cynthia Long
photo by Mark Goldstein

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