22 February 2011

Tuesday Poem: Twoness Before Oneness, by Madeleine M. Slavick


He wears leather wings on his legs
called chaps. Boots, jeans, belt, hat.
Steps in the dirt corral
as if his first circle.
He has lived with horse
for fifty years, says the time
it takes is the time it takes.
As little, as much.
He leads, waits
feels, and the horse can feel
the smallest change
in body, thought, heart.
So be certain. Smooth,
soothe him after you mount him.
Love, love, and
direct with respect.
Worship one another.
There must be
twoness before oneness.
There is only one way of being,
and that is softness.

Credit note: Madeleine M. Slavick is a writer and photographer. Madeleine has several books of poetry and non-fiction and has exhibited her photography internationally. She has lived in Germany, Hong Kong, and the USA, and is currently based in New Zealand, where she maintains a daily blog: touchingwhatilove.blogspot.com. This poem is previously unpublished, and is reproduced by permission of the author.

Tim says: Madeleine tells me that she wrote this poem after meeting a master horse trainer recently, and observing a session when he was breaking in a horse. I like the flow of this poem, and I love the ending.

You can see all the Tuesday Poems on the Tuesday Poem blog.


Helen Lowe said...

Great poem--and no sense of 'breaking' of the horse in it.

Mark Pirie said...

Nice poem. It reminds me of that film The Horse whisperer with Robert Redford, Sam Neill and a young Scarlett Johansson. I like the term "horse whisperer" for the one who breaks in horses. I think the novel the film was based on is by Nicholas Evans.

Madeleine Marie Slavick said...

To see the leather wings, the chaps, you can go here:

Thanks Tim, Helen and Mark.

Tim Jones said...

Thanks, Helen, Mark, and Madeleine for responding. Here's that picture as a link:

Leather Wings image

Mary McCallum said...

Heard Madeleine read this poem on National Poetry Day - beautiful reading... the end especially as you say Tim, that word 'softness' ...

Tim Jones said...

Thanks, Mary!

Madeleine Marie Slavick said...

and thank, mary, for inviting me to read!