Horse Totem (for Asphodel)

far-strider
ditch-leaper
wind-chaser
free spirit of open fields

grip-to-my-thighs
pulse-of-my-blood
joy-of-my-eyes
path to ancestral home

star-raker
myth-maker
soul-bridle
guide to my dreaming
painted in clouds
washed by the surf
hoof beat and heart beat
bound into one
crossing the blue horizon

Advertisements

Wayfarer

when i am fire
i burn away anger
when i am tree
i bend with the wind
when i am water
i wear away stone
and know all the wise ways of flowing

when i am cat
i narrow my eyes
when i am dog
i am joyfully willing
when i am horse
i turn with the wind
this is my freedom in going

when i am hare
magic is mine
when i am raven
i watch still and clear
when i am wolf
i see who you are
this is the seeing of knowing

i will leap, bend and flow,
run, turn and go
return as i please
see what i see
magnetic paths pull above treetops
clouds cap the mountains that hide me
dark cool shadows in water
hidden things amongst leaves
as i make my own journey
i follow these old ways alone

water is a life giving blessing
the trees shelter us, breathing
the lone wolf protects the pack
energy runs with the horse
the world is mirrored in the eye of the raven
hidden, unhidden, bidden, unbidden
the hare runs the path of the circle unbroken
running fleet foot in pastures and hills
on horseback i chase the illusive hare
while the raven sits still in the oak
and watches, waiting for me

 

 

Queen of the Horses

 

In golden silks and brocades I appear,
on a horse so white he gleams in the night,
the horse that pulls the high sun in its course,
is mine, in this fertile land, shedding light.

Pwyll sent his horsemen in pursuit of me.
For two days and nights we ran, while they tired,
my stallion never lengthened his stride.
Pwyll the Prince of Dyfed, a man admired,

came out to hunt me, through the wild lands,
I fled him, ahead of his pleading words.
I delighted in the thrill of the chase
and stopped for the solemn promise I heard.

I had come to this place to possess him
but I am never so easily won.
I rebuked him for the harm to his horse.
To wed the Prince of Dyfed I had come.

My name is Rhiannon, of the horse, the land
and the moon. Queen of the Horses, riding,
mother of the lost one, later returned.
Three mystical birds fly with me, hiding.

I come from that Otherworld, fairer far,
my fathers domain, the deepness of seas,
Find me in the wind that runs in the grass.
I shimmer on waters surface in breeze.

When you stand on the high, ancient, hills
where the wind whips and tugs at your hair,
when you see the breath of a horse on cold air,
beneath and between, I am there.

Wayfarer

when i am fire
i burn away anger
when i am tree
i bend with the wind
when i am water
i wear away stone
and know all the wise ways of flowing

when i am cat
i narrow my eyes
when i am dog
i am joyfully willing
when i am horse
i turn with the wind
this is my freedom in going

when i am hare
magic is mine
when i am raven
i watch still and clear
when i am wolf
i see who you are
this is the seeing of knowing

i will leap, bend and flow,
run, turn and go
return as i please
see what i see
magnetic paths pull above treetops
clouds cap the mountains that hide me
dark cool shadows in water
hidden things amongst leaves
as i make my own journey
i follow these old ways alone

water is a life giving blessing
the trees shelter us, breathing
the lone wolf protects the pack
energy runs with the horse
the world is mirrored in the eye of the raven
hidden, unhidden, bidden, unbidden
the hare runs the path of the circle unbroken
running fleet foot in pastures and hills
on horseback i chase the illusive hare
while the raven sits still in the oak
and watches, waiting for me

The Wound

I have a horse I trust and rely on
I feed him, groom him, love him.
I stroke him, he nuzzles my ear.
My heart is gladdened when i see him
When i approach he comes without call.
We move as one in the wind
In a harmonious motion and rhythm
To ride him is pleasure and joy

If he were a wild cat trapped in a corner,
Or a scorpion entering my tent at night,
I would not feel this trust and calmness,
No affection would shine in my glance.
I might expect to sustain a wound,
A wound that might even be mortal.
But my horse is not a cat or a scorpion,
He is my friend and companion.

So the wound from my beautiful horse,
When he suddenly turned and kicked me,
Hurt more than scorpions’ sting or tiger claw.
I don’t know where this blow sprang from,
Some hurt of his own perhaps.
Now we look at each other a little askance
And I wonder how to approach him again.
I only know I must heal this

This healing is bound with my love of him
But my wound is still open and sore.
An enemy is expected to hurt us
We guard against the attack
But when a creature cherished and loved
Gives the blow and the hurt
This wound ploughs a furrow far deeper
It strikes straight and strong to the heart.

Travel Tales – # 1

Having seen a phrase about a mountain path beset with tigers I recalled a dream I had in which my dream horse (a frequent visitor) was unusually allowing me to guide and choose our path (usually I just go where I am taken) and I began to ascend a very steep mountain track and my horse began to struggle but yet still obeyed me until I felt ashamed of the damage I was doing to the horse so I stopped and apologised. My horse immediately forgave me and turned to pastures and galloped to the sea. I took this dream to mean that if we ‘’go with the flow’’, that is Awen, we learn far more than by forcing our own view and decisions upon our life and the way – the sea is not high like a mountain (where perhaps I had foolishly wanted to ‘dominate the peak and look down on all’) but it is a symbol at the very least of the source of life and it ‘’goes with the flow’’, and the moon.

I have also written a poem about a year ago about encountering a dragon in a steep place and the Tower (interspersed with some comments from ordinary daily life when when my dreaming is not looked upon favourably by others).  All I longed for was peace by the river (with my muse) in the realm of imagination and the natural flow of the path. Obstacles can be overcome with some determination but most of all with imagination.

 

Escape from the Tower

 

Climbing the mountain, trying to reach the tower

Confronted by a dragon, endlessly asking me riddles,

While a great storm gathers all about us

Thunderbolts roar, lightning reflects on my shield

 

(“What do you do in that room all the time?

What are you thinking about?’’

I stop and get the food

And gather the rubbish that needs to go out)

 

I am losing my footing on the slippery rocks.

The dragon flashes his eyes with desire

I have to succeed, cannot be overpowered,

I call on the rain to quench his fire

 

(“Always off in imagination,

What’s wrong with you?

You spend hours on that

And it’s not even true’’)

 

I answer the final riddle, the dragon steps aside.

My way no longer barred, I struggle on up the mountain.

The tower reaches up to the clouds

Eagles circle above, come to help me in my troubles

 

(“I know you have talent?

Why don’t you use it?’’

“I work too!’’ i say

“You could work more!’’ says she)

 

The eagle carries me up to the princess, we hover.

She reaches out to me. I swing her onto the eagles back.

My arm circles her waist, her hair flies in my face.

She leans back on me in relief.

 

(“You always were some other place,

Even as a child. No different now than ever.

Why can’t you just be normal,

And stay in reality?’’)

 

We circle together above the now sunlit valleys

Looking down from above, we avoid all the cities and castles

And land in a summer meadow by a singing stream

She adorns herself with flowers, I dream

Animals

I had a cat, shy and nervous,
afraid of big boots.
He had been kicked i am certain.

I had a dog, strong and loyal,
afraid of large crowds and noise.
He had been beaten for sure

My horse was afraid of nothing.
At the sound of a post-horn
he would be off, without me.
He would kick down any stable door,
and gallop, strong-headed for fields.
He could clear a five bar gate
when the wind blew his tale.
But gentle and mild to me, at rest,
as the dearest of lambs,
his ears twitching to the sound of my words
with his head on my shoulder,
falling asleep

I loved every one of them,
my horse, my cat and my dog.
They gave me themselves

Magical is Not the Word

there is a time
for slipping through
where two worlds meet
the fair folk have a name for it
a name i will not tell you
it must remain unspoken

there is a time
the wind keeps turning
here and there
all the cows are restless
dogs bay at the moon
owls hoot in chorus
moths tap at your window
the cats wont let you stroke them
the horse will kick at the stable door

the word means wonderful,
open, charming,
delicious, exciting,
delightful,disarming,
beautiful,
unhinged

on the edge
of the dark wood
i sit
holding my breath

The Horse so fine

Riding in from the fields of scented heather

Leaving the hills of our home behind

We entered into the city on a horse so fine.

All decked out in embroidered leather

His deep chestnut skin like satin gleamed,

His mane was the gold of a polished crown,

A white diamond shone on his brow.

Wonder of wonders, this horse, and the maid

With the sparkling eyes, were mine.

The rings on his bridle jingled

In harmony with her sweet ankle bells

As he sidled, side-stepped, pranced.

 

His ears flicked and turned to every sound.

The curve of his neck showed pent up power.

Who would not admire such a horse

As he insolently passed them by?

He circled and danced, lord of the ground,

An enchantment to hold every eye,

A part of the seeds of our undoing.

Such seeds there were aplenty then,

One was surely jealousy.

How could I know we rode him to our ruin.

 

What else did they begrudge me

While I sang the songs of my homeland,

The land I loved so well.

This city was never ours for the taking,

The world was ne’er so good to our kind

Though we were royally welcomed there.

Youth is innocent, trusting, blind.

 

His eyes were wild and wide,

His tail held high, a flag of joyous defiance.

His bridle caught the sun.

He tossed his head to show his fire.

His hooves rang out on the cobblestones

The horse and I moved as one

As I danced him round the town

 

The Ride

at the edge of a western wood we stood,

quiet horse, forest breeze, golden wheat

all was good, all was plenty,

spread out far and wide beneath us

 

he set his head

to the distant east

master of power

master of grace

 

the miles rolled away

under his feet

drums to his gallop

beats to his pace

 

ahead in the distance

minarets shone

gleams of the sun

reflected heat

 

he slowed in the fields of asphodel

a place of quiet and gentle shades

on the cedar scented summer air

he stopped to rest and gain his breath

 

I never found my purpose there

nor the reason why we came

I left him then, journeyed alone

still haven’t found my way back home

from the dangerous, thrilling, sudden ride

to the fields of the asphodels