Articles, Favorite Quotes, Photos, Tributes,
Poems & Horse Stories
This page is devoted to simply sharing some writings about our favorite subject - horses. Many of these writings are reprinted from other horse-related sites or other publications. If you have a horse story or photo or your horse that you'd like to share, please email it to us.
For the animal should not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with extensions of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings; they are other nations, caught in themselves inn the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendor and travail of the earth.
Inscribe this single word on your heart “compassion.” Whenever you are confused, keep heading in the direction that leads towards deepening your love and care for all living beings, including yourself, and you will never stray far from the path to fulfillment.
Man does not have the only memory,
The animals remember,
The earth remembers,
The stones remember,
If you know how to listen, they will tell you many things.
Claude Kuwanijuma - Hopi Spiritual leader.
In time’s own space
There must be some sweet pastured place
Where creeks sing on and tall trees grow
Some Paradise where horses go.
For by the love that guides my pen
I know great horses live again.
“We who choose to surround ourselves with lives more temporary than our own live within a fragile circle, easily and often breached. Unable to accept its awful gaps, we still would live no other way. We cherish memory as the only certain immortality, never fully understanding the necessary plan. The life of a horse, often half our own, seems endless until one day. That day has come and gone for me, and I am once again within a somewhat smaller circle."
-Irving Townsend "The Once Again Prince"
“When you know who you are; when your mission is clear and you burn with the inner fire of unbreakable will, no cold can touch your heart, no deluge can dampen your purpose. You know that you are alive."
Remember that a little love goes a long way. Remember that a lot goes forever. Remember that friendship is a wise investment. Life's treasures are people ... together.
Realize that it's never too late. Do ordinary things in an extraordinary way. Have health and hope and happiness. Take the time to wish upon a star. And don't ever forget ... for even a day ... how very special you are.
Buck Brannaman has started over 10,000 young horses in his clinics over the past 20+ years. He teaches horse owners how to better understand and work with their horses, using gentle training methods based on trust and respect rather than force. The following excerpts are from Buck’s book, The Faraway Horses, in which he tells the story of his childhood and growing up with an abusive father, then rescued by a foster home where he found his calling and salvation in working with horses. From a life filled with pain and tragedy, Buck says that horses saved his life, and now he devotes his life to giving back to the ones who saved him, the horses.
"Young children have little control over what happens to them. However, becoming adults gives them an opportunity to put things together and become sure of themselves. Many of you have had some sort of black mark on your life when you were a youngster. You may have been abused or abandoned, but if as an adult you use these experiences to justify some proclaimed inadequacies, then you’ve made a mistake and missed some opportunities.
"Adults are given free choice. When you grow up, you can’t blame you inadequacies on your father for having been mean to you, for having whipped you, or on your mother for being mean to you, or on anything else done by your aunt, or your uncle, or your grandparents. You have to take responsibility for what you are and where you’re headed.
"Horses are different from humans. We have to take responsibility for horses simply because they’re always in our care. They can’t get along without us. They’re forced to live in our world. That’s why the rules have changed: an adult horse in our world is still our responsibility. This doubles the burden for us humans. A human must be responsible for himself and for his horse. And when you succeed in both of those areas, life will be pleasant for you as well as for everyone around you.
"In all the years that I’ve been giving clinics, I’ve heard a lot of people talk about how their horses have been abused. After they’ve told me all the things that a horse does and doesn’t do for them, they’ll tell me how they’ve rescued him. Sometimes these people sound as if they’ve started making excuses for the inevitable failures they have already mapped out for themselves. It’s almost as if they feel that, having saved an abused horse, it’s all right for them to fail at their horse work because, in their own minds, at least, they’ve become Good Samaritans.
"However, many of these horses haven’t been abused at all. They may have been neglected, or they may not have a lot of quality, or they may have lacked an adequate education, but they haven’t been abused.
When it comes to a horse that truly has been abused, there are some things you need to understand. You can’t cure what’s wrong with him by just being sympathetic. You can’t help him by just leaving him be and doing nothing. That holds true for all abused creatures, as I found out about myself."
Being a foster child on Forest and Betsy Shirleys’ ranch, Buck learned to "understand the needs of horses that have been treated poorly, and are scared or troubled. You can’t just fix things by showing them love while doing nothing with them. You have to give them some direction, a purpose, a job. They need something to do, some direction to take, a vision of the future so that the past eventually becomes irrelevant. A mistreated horse has more needs than a horse that has had a nice upbringing. You need to be understanding, and you need to have empathy, but you also need to know that an excess of empathy can get you into trouble. You need to provide discipline without forcing it.
"I know they have influenced me in the way I deal with people, but horses have always meant a certain level of consistency in my life. They respond with all their being. All they know is honesty."
The lessons that Buck Brannaman shares are not just about horses, but about life in general. An excellent book!
The Equine Spirit Sanctuary - For Horses and People!