Tag Archives: horses

Horses are not the only signifiers of difference – part 2


All morning as she stares at the computer screen in front of her she is vaguely aware of the usual background chatter, like a radio playing In another room, she can, if she concentrates pick out individual words, even whole sentences, but, she can just let it drift over her, a comforting and familiar chorus of low level annoyance, hunger and a moment or two of anxiety.
The pony has, as usual, been pushed away for the better grazing by the bigger horses.
Alice is worried about something strange, unfamiliar in the hedge.
Oliver wants to know that she will be there soon to bring them back into their stables.

Talking to animal or having animals talk to you, is not, she muses, when she takes 5 minutes to walk away from her desk, all its cracked up to be.

The messages the horses send her range from the dull, at least if you’re human – The grass here is better than the grass over there, To the mysterious , odd almost impossible to translate thought pictures about some equine deity and clouds and the smell of earth and then sometimes the downright horrific, the pony she passed on the road, screaming out its pain and fear from a cancer that nobody had diagnosed.

Her own horses, she can generally cope with. She works hard to keep them safe, secure, spends some time every day sending them messages of reassurance and maintenance and mostly, they manage to keep their voices quiet, try not to bring on the headaches that leave her pale, shaking and unable to meet the eyes of her colleagues and neighbours.

Local pets, the ones she knows live nearby, the ones she passes on her way to the corner shop recognise her, see her as something useful to them, a translation service they utilise when other forms of communication with their own humans have failed them.
“ tell them I don’t like chicken cat food”
“ The collar they bought me is too tight”
“ I get lonely when you go out all day”

These massages are easy to deal with, there are simple ways to pass these on without drawing attention to herself, but there are others which cause more difficulty to her and which sometimes she decides that she can’t hear, doesn’t understand and then she feels disloyal, dishonest. She feels as though she has let them down, those eyes, of cats, dogs, rabbits, budgies and above all, horses, expecting her to sort it out, make it better.

“ Every bone in my body aches now…let me go “
“ when you are not here, your new boyfriend locks me in the garden for hours and forgets to feed me”
“ you love the baby more than me, I hate the baby, I scratch the baby whenever your back is turned “
“ I don’t like you, but you feed me, I prefer the lady in the next house but one “
“ I didn’t mean to kill the hamster, it was an accident”
“ when you ride me, you are too heavy, you hurt my back, please stop”

She has become adept at passing on information to the humans, the other humans in ways that keep her safe.
She is not mad, knows that all of this is not usual,not normal and not something that she should be drawing any attention to, any time soon.

So, instead, she offers up tentative suggestions, wonders out loud if an owner has ever considered a change of feed, if they could use a dog collar that doesn’t fit her dogs.
Some times she takes direct action, scooping up a cat used a football and stealing it away to rehome it far away away from the man who wants to punch his boss but instead kicks his cat across a room.

Her neighbours feel a distance in her and so keep their own distance. She leaves so early in the morning, arrives home after dark, clothes mud spattered and humming with the aroma of horse and dog, that almost nobody ever really notices her and if they do meet she is polite, pats their dog, asks after their cat. They do notice that she never remembers to ask after husbands, wives, children, but after all, they rationalise, if they think about her at all. She has no parter, no family, no life that they can see, poor soul and then their phones ring or a child calls out or the east Enders starts and they forget their train of thought and they only think about her again when they notice how well their tabby kitten looks since they took her advice and changed his brand of cat food.

At night,when she lies in bed, the weight of sleeping dogs a comfortable pressure against her knees, she can, is she chooses to reach out and touch the minds of all the local pets.

The spaniel next door but one, Lord of the sofa now his family have gone upstairs to bed, he stretches full length, yawns, farts and falls asleep.

The grey cat who has discovered a nest of mice and is lying in the flower bed, belly flat against the damp earth, waiting patiently for the first one to poke its nose into the night air before he pounces.

The chickens at number 7, roosting in an unruly bundle of feathers, mad, blank chicken eyes closed as they doze and plot where to hide tomorrow’s newly laid eggs.

She lies quietly, almost asleep herself, closing her mind to the other stories, the ones she does not want to hear, not tonight , not any night.

She lies quietly, so close to sleep herself and tries to forget the face of the man at work, the man who sits two cubicles away from her , the man who explained today, how he is training his pitt bull to hate black people, and as he talked she could hear, a roaring bark of dismay and incomprehension from his dog who wants to love everyone and be loved.

She lies quietly and just before she drifts into sleep, decided that she will change jobs soon, move on to somewhere else, somewhere new.

At 4.45 the alarm jolts her awake again.

Number 51- horses are not the only signifiers of difference – part 1


Number 51 – Horses are not the only signifiers of difference.

Some days, when the alarm jolts her awake at 4:45, her first reaction is one of shock,a disbelief that sleep is over for another 18 hours.

From long experience, she knows that the only way forward is speed and decisiveness. It is much, much worse if she waits or God forbid, allows herself to hit the snooze button.

A deep breath and then kick the duvet back, dislodge the dogs and out of bed into the unheated bedroom.

She puts her jeans straight on, on top of her pyjama bottoms, no loss of precious body heat and then hooded top, baggy jumper and jacket.
Her gloves and hat are downstairs next to the car keys.

The dogs have already raced downstairs to wait at the kitchen door quivering with excitement as they stand there, ready for breakfast.

She checks her watch, 4.53 and puts the kettle on, makes a cuppa and drinks it standing at the back door assessing the weather before she collects up the dogs and leaving her cup half full drags them around the block.

She rarely sees anyone else, it is too early for anyone to yet be on their way to work and fate too late for even the most hardcore party animals.

The dogs know how these morning walks go and are business like,keep their sniffing and snuffling to a minimum and 10 minutes later they are back home.

She grabs work bag, packed lunch, her work clothes on hangers and her after work stuff and by 5.20 she is in the car, glad that there was no frost last night and so no window scrapping and rubbing to freeze her hands even before she has started.

She reckons that she could do this drive in her sleep and probably has done, only coming properly awake when a car pulls out unexpectedly.

At this time of the year,the whole drive is in darkness, only the world service in the radio to break the silence all around her. Over the years she has listened to hours of the world service and has absorbed all manner of strange facts. She tries to keep them to herself, but occasional one pops out, usually followed by a silence from her work colleagues and a metaphorical step backwards from them, another layer of distance.

The stables are completely dark, she uses her phone as a pitiful torch to unlock the chain around the gate and even before she parks she can hear them greeting her or at least greeting the arrival of breakfast and morning.

The horses are all looking over their stable doors.
Alice whinnies whickers, an oddly small noise from such a large animal.
Oliver starts to kick the door, panicking that today will be the day that he is left hungry and alone and the pony, the pony simply stares as he does every morning as if her arrival is simply an unexpected surprise.

She has the morning routine down pat, feed, put on rugs suitable for the weather and then the trudge to the field, hideous in wet weather when the mud threatens to suck the boots from her feet.
She once found herself wondering how long she would lie her undiscovered if she did actually fall and drown in mud that comes above her knees.
The answer was frightening and that thought,along with a whole mental box of thoughts to be ignored, has been put to one side, pushed down into her own figurative mud and left to drown there.

The stable work is reassuringly routine, she sets herself little competitions, like to shave time off her personal records and on the best days, where nothing goes wrong, she has a precious 10 minutes before she needs to head off to work and then she stands looking out towards the field and as night turns into early morning, she watches the horses become visible and smokes a single cigarette.

She needs to get the time of her arrival at work exactly right, too early and the night security man will have to let her in and will see her in all her hay, mud and straw covered glory, too late though and there is a danger of bumping into early bird colleagues before she has sneaked into the workplace gym showers and transformed into her daytime self.

Her cubicle is anonymous,no photos of family, partners, smiling faces on holiday beaches. She doesn’t have any of those and over the years she has learnt that photos of the horses,of events they have done, even a rosette or two simply set her even further apart. So, she has compromised on a photo of the dogs and a mug with a thelwell pony cartoon.

She has worked in offices ever since she left school, happy enough with the routine, the regular start and finish times, the 60 minute lunch break and the work that she leaves at the door even before she reaches the door.
She is told that she lacks ambition, but works hard, is rarely off and is happy to allow her co workers to have holidays to fit around families, Christmas and school terms. So, she stays here for the moment.
There will come a time, there always comes a time when she needs to leave and then she will gone with as little fuss as she arrived and within weeks,sometimes days, nobody there will quite be able to remember her name properly. She may leave the mug behind but she will carefully remove the dogs photograph.


Almost a Christmas ghost story……

The woman is cold, her clothes which seemed quite suitable when she left her city home this morning, are subtly, slightly not right for this place.

She stands, not quite sure what to do with herself, all too aware of her interloper status and all too aware of her frozen feet and hands.

The women around her are all, it seems, tall, with rangy bodies, padded gilets, expensive, although mud encrusted boots and around all of them are the horses.

She is here at the invitation of a woman who may or may not become a lover in the future. She has come to meet this womans’ horse, to show an interest, although her own interest is in something quite different.

That woman, her almost friend, keeps vanishing, re-appearing to do something confusing, complicated to the large brown horse in the stable where she, still cold, is standing.

And because she has nothing to do, does not know what to do or even how to do it, she stands and looks around, stares at all these busy, purposeful women.

A woman steps in front of her and catches her eye, does more than that, actually takes her breath away. This woman is tall, slim, in fact thin, her body lean, muscled, taut. Her face is tanned, even on this icy winter day and her hair is steel grey and short, close-cropped to her skull. She looks completely self-contained, her face tight with concentration. She notices that our woman, our frozen, foot stamping woman is looking at her and nods, curt, but not unfriendly and then she steps out of view and vanishes behind another stable block.

Later, when our woman and her almost friend have found a pub and our woman is sipping brandy, trying not to shiver, trying to flirt,just a little, she asks her almost friend, almost lover about this other woman, but her friend does not recognise her from the description and conversation veers off onto other paths.

Time passes, the almost friend does not become a lover – the friendship withers over too many late phone calls, too many almost flirtatious brandies, but, surprisingly, the horses stick.

Our woman learns to ride, learns to wear the right expensive, mud encrusted boots, learns to complete all the tasks that so confused her then, so many years ago on the wintry December day.

She has her own horse now, spends time with the all the rangy horsey women, feels at ease in that horsey space and then one day, another wintry December day, she catches sight of herself in a mirror, dressed to deal with the cold.

The face that looks back at her is tanned, even in the middle of winter. Her hair has grayed, become almost silver, she has cropped it for convenience, its tidier under a riding hat. She has over the years lost weight, grown muscle, become athletic looking.

The face that looks back at her is the woman who took her breath away, so long ago.

She crosses the stable yard, deep in thought as to what this could mean and notices a stranger, eyes watering in the wind, feet shuffling on the gravel, an attempt to keep warm and nods before she  steps out of view and vanishes behind another stable block.

Plaited Poppy

It’s just been too lovely outdoors today to even consider any writing and Poppy was preparing for her first ever proper photoshoot, I though I would just share a pic of her royal spottyness, all clean and plaited up.


In lieu of any writing

As the writing pixie seems to be taking a little absence, worry not, ye lovers and likers of the little world that is rubies and duels, instead, we have been celebrating pet birthdays.
Poppy horse was 6 today and Awesome Ethel, born to a feral cat in our front garden, celebrated her first birthday.



Some new Poppy pictures






I realised that I had been very slack in posting any new pictures of the baby spotty one, soba few from last week

And this is why girls love their ponies……. WARNING ADULT CONTENT

Sitting astride him, strong thighs wrapped round his waist, she cannot help but notice how delicate, even fragile his body is.
His chest is narrow, the skin pale, soft, almost hairless, she can see each rib, a delicate birdcage of bones, His body moving upwards in rhythmic movement. She focuses, starts to pay attention, her movements mirroring his, her buttocks, muscular, firm, lifting an inch or two away from his groin with each upward thrust.
He groans.
Pleasure ?
Pain ?
She wonders if she has been too firm, too strong.
His hip bones are sharp, razor like. She can almost imagine them grazing the delicate skin of her inner thighs and she moves with him, trying to keep the rhythm, feels herself get left behind and hoping to camouflage her loss of momentum, she leans towards his face. His breath is on her, soft, smelling of red wine and cigarettes.
With one hand, she gently traces the angles of his face, runs a finger over his lips, his mouth opens and his teeth nip at that finger, catching the end of her nail.
She moves her hand into his hair, short, a no nonsense no 2 all over. Her caress causes him to writhe, his head thrown back on the pillow and she is drifting, drifting away………….
The other one, the other one, her stolen moment that morning, he is creeping into this moment, his presence filing her, diminishing the man beneath her.

HIS muscles, taut, firm against her hands, her thighs, her bum. His every movement radiates strength, certainty, a muscularity of purpose. She moved happily against HIM, the rythmn one of knowingness, beyond conscious though.

At full gallop she is aware only of the speed, the strength, his power beneath her and when they are alone together, away from prying eyes, she gives her self totally to the moment.

Her jodphurs are tight.
Skin tight.

She pushes her self deeper into the saddle, feeling her cunt moisten, react to the pressure,the movement, the animal smell.

Her fingers curl into his mane, tugging tighter and tighter as she comes closer to orgasm and she kicks him on, pushing for a last blast of eye watering speed.

At the top of the hill, they both pause, re-gain their breath, his sides are heaving. She leans her head into his, rubbing her face on the soft velvetyness of his neck, his ears.

She sighs, stretches her legs, feels and savors the after shocks of tiny, tiny pin pricks of pleasure.

Shaking her head, dragging herself back to this presence, looks down at the man beneath her, her hips rotate, his prick held tight within her.

She rides him hard, pushes him to come, to cry out and then to sink, fall back on the pillow, passion spent.

And afterwards, when they lie together, in easy familiarity, his hand tracing lazy circles on her breasts, he wonders, not for the first time, what exactly it is she thinks about when they have sex.