April 28, 2017

Source: Bigstock

The relationship between man and horse is older than civilization, and anyone who has worked with horses, or even known them, must wonder at their readiness to be subject to mere two-legged creatures so much weaker than themselves”€”wonder and be grateful. For my part I am also grateful to have known some of the most beautiful sights of country life: a pair of Clydes plowing a field with furrows straight as a Roman road, or one pulling a cart piled high with sheaves as the harvest was led home; magnificent, mostly tractable, even docile, servants of man.

There was much hardship and, sadly, some brutality in the old days when farms depended on the willingness of horses to do our bidding”€”but much beauty, too. I am happy, and count myself fortunate, to have even a few vivid memories of the time when the Clydes were kings and queens of the farmtouns and the fields. I”€™m grateful to Tim Pears for reviving these memories and many more in his marvelous novel. Do read it if you care for horses and feel any nostalgia for the days before, first, tractors and then combine harvesters condemned them to redundancy.


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