glenatron: (Default)
Back in 2004, for my 28th birthday, we took on a horse with the aim of him being mine or largely mine as [ profile] sleepsy_mouse had her little arab to ride. Things didn't really work out that way- said arab's injuries proved to be intractable and in the end Joe was more [ profile] sleepsy_mouse's horse than mine. Still he was our horse, we both rode him and he was central to our lives for the next few years. Looking back it was not until my seventh post that he got a mention on LJ but he predates it by a considerable time. Of course, he has always been my default userpic. He was the first horse of ours I rode and I learned a whole lot from him. After a few years on loan, his owner, Karen, gave him to [ profile] sleepsy_mouse in a moment of incredible generosity and intense emotion and he was actually our own horse.

By 2007, not long after we lost Othello, he seemed to be getting uncomfortable both ridden and in groundwork and after various tests and check-ups x-rays indicated arthritic changes in every joint up his forelegs we realised we would have to retire him. A few months later he colicked badly, a sand colic. When it happened again a few weeks later, both times necessitating a visit to hospital, we knew he couldn't stay with us as the soil here is sand and he moved over to live with our friend whose yard is on clay. For the last three years he has lived out with her three mares, considering himself to be stalliano, king of all the stallions. He has, all in all, been very happy over that time, if increasingly creaky and shorter of stride.

This autumn things have gone worse for him- he's found it harder to move and needed more pain medication to get by, some problem in his throat was blocking his breathing and then last week he had a problem with one of his hind feet- maybe an abscess but it didn't show itself through poulticing and with his front legs so sore he was finding it hard to stand. After visiting yesterday and today, [ profile] sleepsy_mouse, along with our friend Karen who was Joe's human before we were made the hardest decision that we have to make as horse owners. They were both with him at the end.
Joseph Pony - illustrated version )

And the thing is this, really: We only get these gifts, the brilliant, intense and joyous lives that our friends share with us, on credit. The more value they bring to us, the greater the price they extract at the end. And it is always, always worth it.

Joe's legacy for us has been enormous. He really has changed pretty much everything and a world without him is a smaller, sadder place.

So tonight the stars look down on England's gypsy fields and share cold tears for a great and gentle heart and a questioning eye that will receive their light no more, but find instead some greater glory. And somewhere past the tears that mist our sight, our friend finds strong legs to carry him over endless summer fields where no fear can fill him and no harm come to him or the herd that run with him in those bright days.

Joseph Pony, 1993-2010
glenatron: (moody othello)
My favourite book in the world is Mythago Wood and although I loved it when I first read it after reading it's later counterpart Gate Of Ivory, Gate Of Horn that gave context and subtlety to the story, I found even more to it. I have never reached the end of that book with dry eyes, it is simply brilliant. Consequently I was very excited earlier in the year to hear that not only had The Bone Forest, a compendium of short stories set around the fringes of the wildwood, been re-published but there was also a third novel to wrap up the story of the Huxley brothers coming out. Sure enough Avilion came out earlier in the summer and I bought it straight away in hardback. I wouldn't say it equals it's precursors- by commencing within the wildwood it is less of a journey into that mystery than the other Mythago stories, but it is still a very fine read and full of the unique and primordial depth that I love about all those books.

So yes, you can consider me a fan of Robert Holdstock's books - going right back to The Dark Wheel which I read many times when I was young and obsessed with Elite - and I was very sad to hear there will be no more.
glenatron: (moody othello)
I've probably mentioned Gem a few times in the past. With her bizarre behaviour, quirky mannerisms and oversize personality she's been a major part of our lives over the last few years. Today was her 21st birthday.
Happy birthday, big mare, we'll miss you. )

Hug your horses, folks.
glenatron: (Default)
My granny died just before midnight last night. It was no surprise- she has been very weak and confused for the last year or so and in the last week she went into a serious decline, hardly able to open her eyes when we last saw her. She was just two months short of 98 and had lived a very full life, in fact I would say it would be a challenge to find anyone who had lived a better life or been a better person. Her patience, kindness and relentless good humour, very necessary qualities in anyone who spends most of their life married to a Moxon male, made her friends everywhere she met people.

An actress by training, she took up puppetry and between the second world war and the 1980s ran a wonderful puppet theatre. Her last show was at my fifth birthday party and it held us absolutely captivated.

I have endless happy memories of her and it makes me glad that she loved Lou and really enjoyed hearing about my musical endeavours. She was eager to hear all about the ponies whenever we visited and I'm only a little sad we never got them as far as her house (it's not so far from where they live now) so she never got to see them in person.

She also made the tastiest flapjacks you can possibly imagine. I believe she passed the recipe on to mum at some point. I shall endeavour to find it and post it here so that everyone can enjoy their tasty goodness.

It's sad that she has gone but not more so than her long decline, particularly the amnesia and confusion that had really afflicted her in the last year or so, stripping her of identity and leaving her in need of constant support. At least wherever she is now she is there complete and she lives on in the fond memories of everyone who knew her and I think also in the ability of her descendents to keep calm and handle things with a sense of humour. One of the last times she showed any sign of consciousness was when my cousin brought their baby son to see her yesterday; she woke up for a moment and managed a smile as her great grandson held her finger.

Nancy Moxon, 1909-2007, a life well lived.
glenatron: (moody othello)
Best pony in the world )The news bit )The Teacher )
Othello, Dales Pony, 1994-2007: He was great of heart

My heart is broken.

July 2017

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