Trudy Andrew | Canadian Author

Horse Tails


The idea of chasing after and catching a loose stallion, isn’t at all a pleasant one, especially when said stallion has just treated a grown man like a mere rag doll. Yet, that’s exactly what I was expected to do. Not only was it my job to do as I was told, it didn’t really enter my head what a potentially dangerous task it was. It wasn’t until many, many years later, when I was telling the story that it was pointed out to me, and I recognized the risk.
Back to the story at hand.
Symposium had taken advantage of the unexpected freedom, and within seconds had raced by the front of the long barn, and disappeared from view. Running after him, I slowed before turning the corner and risking the chance of meeting a galloping horse. With no big grey in sight, I booked it towards the back of the barn, just as fast as I could run. Unless he decided to try and jump a fence, he was trapped, well sort of, as there was all kinds of room to run by me, if he so chose to. There was a system of gates to prevent horses from leaving the complex if they got away, but there was still plenty of room to run and be crazy. As soon as I cleared the back of the barn, I saw him. Symposium was standing at a fence behind the straw stack. Beautiful head flung up, eyes wide, nostrils flared, he was truly an amazing sight to behold. Still, I wasn’t there to admire the view. I had a horse to catch.
As I approached, I could tell that though he wasn’t looking at me, he was very aware, and paying attention. Completely unsure of how he would behave, I decided to act like this was no different from when he was out for his daily exercise in one of the pens. Standing there, a good hundred feet from him, I did what I did when calling in any horses. I rubbed my palms together to make a sound similar to oats being shaken in a bucket, and called him.
“Hey buddy,” I said, my tone of voice normal and unhurried, “come. Time to go in. That’s enough goofing around for one day … come.”
Tearing his rapt gaze from the broodmares way out in the field to look at me, he let out an explosive snort that made me jump a little, leapt into the air after the typical, stallion toss of the head, then galloped straight at me. I stood my ground. There was no where to hide even if I could’ve outrun him, which I couldn’t. Coming to an abrupt, bouncing halt directly before me, he stretched out his nose to check my hands, and I took hold of the leather lead. Just like that, his great escape was over. I checked his nose for injury, as the lead chain threaded through the halter and across the top of his nose could certainly have done damage. If he’d stepped on the lead while tearing about, he could easily have made quite the mess of himself. Thankfully, there was none.
My quick check done, I headed back towards the front of the barns, the big grey doing his prancy dance by my side. We met the injured handler half the way back, and I handed the horse over to him. I had to give him credit. That arm of his had to be hurting, yet he didn’t let on, though his face was a tad red. I admired the fact that he didn’t punish the great horse. The time for discipline had long since passed. Horses weren’t and aren’t like dogs. They don’t carry guilt around. The time for a reprimand was when Symposium had behaved badly, not ages later. What he’d done was long since gone from what was important to him. He was simply led back to the barn.
I never did get to see the man’s arm, but I bet it was an impressively morbid injury. He continued to be Symposiums handler, and though he appeared unafraid, I noticed he seemed more careful, or possibly aware.
As for me, I simply carried on as usual. After all, teens are invincible.


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About Trudy Andrew

Trudy Andrew lives on a small farm just east of Winnipeg, Manitoba, where she enjoys her Morgan horses. A dreamer since she was a child, its no surprise to those who know her well that her imagination would find an outlet in writing, as it has in the past through artwork.
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 Oakbank, MB