Thursday, July 25, 2013

Memorial to the Working Horse

After long labour on the patient ground:
The plough, the cart, the miserable machine;
After the frost-hard mornings, streaming rain,
The heart-cold silences, the knifing wind,
The hard jerk of the harness, straining toil,
The scant-filled manger and the draughty barn;
After the angry words or kindly pats,
The weather and the blether and the pain,
To yearn for rest yet do it all again ..

Not thus to find one’s immortality
In harness still, the endless round to tread.
The dream still potent, though yet unfulfilled,
Declares another way they had not said.

Another way – where hooves flash from the ground
Into fleet air to sing across the sky
As sharp as lightning or the vivid stars
As free as laughter soaring in delight.
Servant no longer to the goals of man,
Servant no longer to the gruelling day,
Servant no longer to sad servitude.
Here strength makes partner with dear liberty:
To run for joy in having legs to run,
Or rest content, with boundless time to rest
In sweetest meadows underneath the sun.

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