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I don’t really want to be doing this right now. I’d rather be napping. But, here I sit, in the quiet afternoon, with sleeping children upstairs. Today was my oldest daughter’s first riding lesson, on a gorgeous rhone named Promise. Promise is thirty years old, which is like, ninety in horse years. She’s living with my friend and colleague Lynn, who is an amazing horsemanship instructor at the school. She gets our students, even the frightened ones, to ride with perfect ease, and every semester they put on a show where they do crazy stuff like stand on a trotting horse and do flips off and such. That she can make such gawky and awkward teens feel at ease on such huge creatures astounds me.

My daughter was a natural. She loved it and can’t wait to go back, which is great, but also kind of an expensive sport. She’s been pestering me for lessons since December, when Santa wrote her a letter and said that little girls need at least four years of riding lessons before he will gift them a pony. She took it so seriously, it was gorgeous to watch. She’s so brave, when she really wants something.

I went to Autumn’s graduation party this evening, and watching my girls on the dock at her grandparent’s ranch and thinking about them all teenagery and grown-up and making life plans got me so choked up and teary. Luckily, my allergies covered for me, so I didn’t look like I was crying. I’m kind of worn out from the emotions and social interaction (hermity poet), but I’m going to try to poem about that feeling. My new goal is to make at least one person I’m close to cry with each poem. Watch out. You might be next.

The Same Kind of Brave

It the same kind of brave, for you to take up the reins,

as it is for me to let you, to let every vision of you thrown,

trampled, bucked enter with swift violence,

for me to abandon my fear to your dust.

It is the same kind of brave, for you to show up in a new classroom,

as it is for me to let you, to let every vision of you thrown,

trampled, bucked enter with harsh paranoia,

and everything that was hard then is easier now,

and I just want to go back to the days of standing behind you,

arms at the ready, to catch your fall.

It is the same kind of brave, for me in the watching, as it is for you in your footsteps.

Courage, huckleberry, courage in your footsteps, is all I want to teach,

and to teach it I have to be it, despite the flickering terror that accompanies your every move.

Hand in hand with your new discoveries come my winged fears,

as fearsome and dreamsome as myth, hand in hand,

you and I with our frights newly-wrought,

every day, it is the same kind of brave.


So, I don’t know who I’m gonna make cry with that one. Probably HP,  is my guess, or Mom. They count the most, it is true. Happy Sunday, my people of poem.