Raw power,. uncontrolled, fleet footed, muscles bunching under the skin as the horse gallops across the field enjoying the warmth of the latwe spring sun on his back. I lean on the gate, watching, smiling, feeling the stress of the last few days draining from my body into the ground at my feet, running off me like water cascading down my body in the shower. I lower my eyes for a moment, draw a deep breath, and, cupping my hands around my mouth, whistle loud and long. The horse stops, turning his head to look towards me, whinying in recognition. I smile again as he accelerates into a trot, les crossing the grassy field as he approaches. I climb the gate, entering the field as he nears, standing, waiting as he trots over, circling away once before slowing to a walk and approaching, muzzle lowered, as I, eyes down, extend my hand, fingers open, palm up. His nose touches my hand and I feel the hot breath from his nostrils as he snorts, renewing our friendship, reaffirming our bond in his own language, a physical language of gesture and posture, one which I have learned as we have grown up together.
I stroke his cheek, running my hand down his neck as I move closer, his head over my shoulder as he nuzzles my back, the connection strong, growing as we stand together, a man and his horse, a connection stretching back to the earliest domestication of animals. The horse and the dog were the first and it shows as I feel the history of my ancestors, men and women of the horse through the generations. The feeling comforts me as I rest my head against his shoulder, my arms around his neck, finally at peace amidst the wreckage of my shattered psyche. This is the therapy I need, not words, not medication, just the connection with another living being who asks nothing of me other than to be treated with respect, who demands nothing of me that I am not willing to give, who will never hurt me unless I make a mistake. I am at peace, at rest, and I feel my heart beat slow as I breath in the sweet smell of his sweat, burying my face in his neck as the tears begin to fall…..