Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Again in Wyoming - Part 2

The sun was beginning to gradually set on the horizon to the west, and I stood for a few moments looking at Heart Mountain which was barely visible from our vantage point alongside the road.
But the profile of the Indian in the mountain - with long forehead, abundant nose, wart on chin was unmistakable.
Heart Mountain is visible from everywhere in Cody, and as we drove closer to Cody upon our arrival a few weeks ago,this mountain was my first definitive clue that we were finally close.
The sun was setting in the west, but from where we stood I looked at the light and realized that it was changing in front of me minute by minute.
The wild mustangs - descendants of those that were brought to this country from Spain centuries ago - remained content to simply and quietly graze......................
Only one lone foal, but with many pregnant females there are certainly more to follow...............
Mother and daughter...............
We are back living in exactly the same house that we lived in last year when we lived in Cody.
A small dwelling that (as one of my old co-workers and still my friend observed) is about the size of a lunch box.
It is small, very reasonably priced, is located about 4 miles outside of town, is extremely quiet and borders thousands of rugged acres of Bureau of Land Managment land.
The woman - our neighbor - is 71 years old.
She has lived alone most of her life, cares for the horses that reside on the same property during most of the year (except when they are moved to summer pastures as they are now), and is a true survivor.
She and LC stood together watching the horses, enjoying brief unexpected movements and gestures of these wild and free animals, enjoyed watching Baby Mustang as he grazed closed to his mother.
We were all greatly enjoying this quiet adventure and we stayed until almost dark..................
My truck alongside the highway, with the moon already visible even though the sun had not yet disappeared..............
Although the main herd stayed close together there were three horses that grazed separate from the rest of the herd.
Two grazed together and this one stood alone.
He was a 100 yards away from me, facing towards the setting sun, and when I first noticed him I wasn't sure.
Was that him????
One of many vehicles that slowed down on the highway to watch the horses briefly, before continuing on.................
Slowly this lone horse, while still intent on grazing, made his way in our direction.
Was that him????
He was still a long way from me, but as I focused in on this animal it began to dawn on me that - yes - it was our Battle Weary Stallion.
I included the first link to him in the previous blog entry.
This is the link to the second part of the story of this horse:
The last time I saw him was last July.
He was torn and beaten and battered and bruised, and it was obvious that he had only recently battled for and lost his place for dominance in the herd.
Although the public is supposed to remain 500 feet or more from the horses, on that day last summer we were driving slowly on a dirt road watching a herd of horses move away from a large watering hole.
This battered and beaten horse was only 10 or so yards from the dirt road, but was too beaten up to seem to care about us.
He was following the herd as they moved away from the small pond.  Part of the herd but separate.
Although I am not certain, I believe that this is a different herd from the one we watched last summer.
A smaller herd.
A younger herd.
I never expected to see him again.  At the very least I never expected to recognize him again.
But it was him...................
Two stragglers, barely visible in the darkness of the setting sun.................
As with the herd last summer, eventually (through some unknown-to-me method of horse communication) they as one began to slowly and assuredly head east.
In the same direction of the one lone stallion we had seen more than an hour before..................
Instructions For Living a Life
Pay attention
Be astonished
Tell about it..........Mary Oliver

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