First Saddle Sonnet
This tall man, hard from handling heavy tack,
Hitches his skittish filly to a post,
Lifts curry comb to groom her bristled back
In gentle circle gestures, like a ghost
Easing an armored steed before a battle.
Once he has her breathing more at peace,
He places on a weathered western saddle
Then tugs a rough cinch tight within the crease
Between her shoulders and her ribs. He taps
Her neck and smooths out tangles in her mane,
Guiding bridle, bit, and leather straps
Over her face. She snaps. He grips a rein,
But slackly, and she softens. Slow to force,He knows what harm’s in harnessing a horse.
© 2013 Steven Withrow, all rights reserved