This poem was a highly commended finalist in the Poetry section of our 2014 Inaugural Writing Competition.
I too have stared, like a horse, over a fence
into the next field. I’m becoming tired of knowing
that the wind up my nostrils is a sign of things
coming and going. I have frozen from the inside,
not knowing who opens the gate, or when.
I too have spoken the language of horse,
said things with my back legs,
caused offence, spoken too quickly,
turned out my upper lip after a taste of red wine.
I’ve run my hoof across the ground
waiting for something. Now I know how to wait
like a horse does, knotting my mane in class,
looking very far into the distance, counting strides.
Sometimes I think I’ve come this far as a foal,
sleeping with my head between my knees.
The only things I know for sure are real:
the sound of galloping, never to touch you
when your ears are flat back, how to get near you,
how to dream in the back of a horsebox,
how to fall, how to sleep standing up.