Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Memories Like Film Clips
When Zanzibar Took Off
It was early spring. The snow barely glazed the ground. The snow glazed the ground thinly, like if a child smeared the icing of a cake with the finger. The snow that remained on the ground had the thinness of the spot where the child smeared the icing of a cake with the finger. Each horse grazed on the grass, crunching loudly. My Daddy grasped my hand the whole time. I looked at the grass, brown from winter and slowly becoming green again from the Spring time. All the world became green again in the Spring, and I knew it was good. In front of us, the horses grew bigger. If I kept walking , my head would just lightly scrape the fuzzy belly of a horse. I was short. We stopped in front of each horse, petting their soft nuzzles. My favorite horse was Zanzibar. He was the most beautiful and graceful. His head was as fine boned as the feet of a ballerina, and his nose curved like an archers bow. My Daddy lifted me onto Zanzibars back. His coat smelled of sweet hay and dust. My Daddy lifted my sister first, actually, and I sat behind her and held on to her waste. The horse stood, breathing, without a halter. My sister and I were then flying. Zanzibar saw a monster in the grass, we like to say. So he ran and ran so quickly. We held on. We could have fallen and hit the ground. We could have fallen and hit the ground and been killed by booming hooves. My sister gathered the silky, brown mane into her hands, and she squeezed her fingers to her palms to create a firm grip. My Daddy ran towards us worried as ever. And we laughed and laughed. The laughter bounces off this paper. The laughter seeps from this pen; it is breathed in and out. We could have fallen.

Anointing Prince With Oil
The pony was very sick and I thought he might die. His sickness is called colic, and it means he ate something and it hurt his stomach. Our horse doctor traveled to Prince to give him shots and to tell me about caring for my sick pony. Prince looked the same as he did in healthy, but I saw sorrow creep from his brown, round eyes. His brow furrowed, his head drooped; it was real bad. The sickness was real bad. The doctor said to walk Prince, to walk and walk and walk and walk him. I could even choose where I walked him, but I could not choose how often or when. This was because I must walk him very often and walk him and do this very often. For four days Prince and I went on quiet walks. He was small. He had a light chestnut coat. His hooves were dark. He had a dark, almost black, stripe sailing from the bottom of his mane to the top of his tail. This was called a dorsal stripe. I comforted him by explaining that he would be okay. I knew he would, I knew he would. Fat must have wanted to curl her long fingers aroung him. Fate must have wanted him, to taste him as she may savor a chewy cookie. So I prayed to God that he might save my pony. I put both of my hangs on Prince’s shoulders and prayed. I prayed and prayed and prayed. And then I prayed. And then, the next morning, I prayed, but he felt better. When I prayed in the morning, I then walked to the house. I found a bottle of olive oil in the cupboard. Its smooth, yellow surface felt firm and true in my hands. My hands knew the seriousness of this business. I looked at them. The hands were a creamy yellow like the olive oil. They were also glossy like oil. I was very young. My walk quickened. My hands received the oil and marked a cross on the chestnut head of Prince. I then marked a cross on each window of the house. The oil smeared and left marks on the windows that still can not be scrubbed away. This cured him. It was true that it would cure him. I did this, I really did. I marked every window of the house because God could save my pony.

1 comment:

mespeicher said...

I've never seen a snow description like the smeared icing of a cake. It is a great description. What a day that was. Why don't you try to describe how smoothly he ran? Had it been any other horse you would have fallen, but his gallop was like sliding down a satin ribbon: you didn't even know he was moving but for the changing scenery.