Title: Sport 40: 2012

Publication details: Fergus Barrowman, 2014, Wellington

Part of: Sport

Conditions of use



    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Sport 40: 2012

Marty Smith

page 420

Marty Smith

Dawn horses

those horses talk to themselves
low, tender
as the fat wetness of roses

out in the loose air, scary things
   lie low       flutter, burst out—
fly like black sins over the minds of horses

who flatten and scatter

Tell the horses not to be angry

at first sight of Cortés on his stallion
Incas prostrated themselves
before these Gods
rising dark with ash
blowing smoke
creatures from the great mating
of the planets

page 421

Dad’s horses

Dad’s horses darkened out the sun.

They were chests and legs,
I was at their knees looking up
at the lode star of the stirrup,
at my four storey father.

I’d meet him on the road
he’d put me up on the saddle
while he walked below
and I held the world,
the whole sky swelling.

At three, he let me hold the reins.
A bird burst out, startled the horse.
Concussed, I was put to bed,
stones chattering in my ear.

We had to learn bareback.
His horses were slippery rippled
we clung like monkeys.
Got straight back on.
Sat up.
I copy Dad’s model of the upright style—
Dad and Kimmy over wire
in the Hunter Class
at the Dannevirke Show—
they jump across the walls of my flats, houses

In rain, in wind, the hills lean in while he gets smaller
and I kick and kick my pony to keep in sight.

He rides on in front. I want to call
him back, cry, Wait.