Swimming with Horses

Sweet mare, so tender and shy. One of a herd of near-wild horses who roam through sacred pueblo lands, she averted her gaze and kept her distance. I felt a kinship with what seemed like a quiet pain flowing through the barbed wire fence between us. But the longer I focused on her profile, it was clear the pain was mine. She was showing me the power of stillness. I will always remember my time beneath the generous arms of a cottonwood grove, swimming in pools of shade with sacred horses.


And a woman spoke, saying, Tell us of Pain..
And he said:
Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding.
Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.
And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily miracles of your life your pain would not seem less wondrous than your joy;
And you would accept the seasons of your heart, even as you have always accepted the seasons that pass over your fields.
And you would watch with serenity through the winters of your grief.

Much of your pain is self-chosen.
It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self.
Therefore trust the physician, and drink her remedy in silence and tranquility:
For her hand, though heavy and hard, is guided by the tender hand of the Unseen,
And the cup she brings, though it burn your lips, has been fashioned of the clay which the Potter has moistened with Her own sacred tears.

– Kahlil Gibran, On Pain


Photo Credits:  Mare Leans into Her Stallion by Susan J. Preston, Taos Sacred Pueblo Land, New Mexico © 2020, all rights reserved
Technical: Fuji XT-3 | 100-400mm