Something Up His Hoof


watercolor by Anthony Yerkovic III
click on image for original painting

He stands quietly with such majesty of spirit. I hustle around him taking care, feeding, grooming, talking, … doing energetic work with my hands…busy in my mind, tense in my stomach, stopping occasionally to breathe in the beauty of all of life, then back to mind chatter and worry.

Seemingly asleep, Apolinaire, was wearing his awareness in disguise. He reached out and found my hand again.  This time, though, I wasn’t depressed as I’d been the prior night. (see Out of the Doldrums) I had figured I’d slip in some energy work on those hooves like I had started to do the previous evening, but  once again before I got my hands in position, Apolinaire had his soft muzzle in one of them. He began flinging it in the air like an old limp shoe before I had a chance to realize what was happening. My laughter came bubbling out. What was he doing?

“No,” he was saying, “don’t try so hard to fix me. My healing comes with your healing. Laugh, and linger in the joy.”

He was preparing me for something. I could sense it. For the next two days he was alert to my sneakiness as I tried again and again by habit to “fix” him with the energy work. With just a slight intention escaping the jail gates of my mind, he had his head turned so quickly to reach for my hand, the thought had not yet had time to take up residency in my consciousness. But I snapped to attention in response and stopped with amused chuckles. Then he stopped, having made only a slight gesture of his head. Our behavioral interactions were a slowly moving pendulum coming to a halt. Message understood between us.

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