Photo from Werner Kissling’s “Eriskay, 1934.”

No longer wanted or needed, Peat Pony
Beven was given to us. Papa said, “No.”
Mama and I said, “Yes.” I brought him
Home, baskets, harness, bells, unloved,
Beven was grateful for new home, place
Where he could work, take shelter in
Cold winter, pouring rain, drifting snow.

I knew he was different, not the brightest
Or fastest island pony. Yet, he possesses
Endearing qualities, perfect trail companion,
Carrying baskets, heavy with peat for home
Dry-stacking. Beven listens to my singing,
Conversations we have, thoughts shared
From shorelines, meandering rocky heights.

Above all, he is patient, gentle, never bites
Or kicks, careful on narrow paths, just a
Whimper stream crossing with heavy load
Of peat. “I can do this,” he says, plain as day,
Brown eyes twinkling, white blaze, his life
Fulfilled by kind words, sunshine, to be loved
And acknowledged, good brushing he enjoys.

By lantern light I write this, snug within stone
Cottage, night gale blowing, rain mixed with
Snow. Where is Beven? In his little barn built
Onto cottage walls, room enough to turn
Around, deep enough to hide, floor covered
By hay-straw, wearing brown blanket Mama
Made for him, he never takes it off.

See this link for Werner Kissling’s “Eriskay, 1934,”
with regard to 4:09 to 4:38 minutes.

Often my poetic characters have animal companions,
mostly shepherding dogs, Ekho and Ritsa, and an Arctic
fox  named Svinnr or Swift. Here, Willow and Beven are
Hebridean island companions, rarely far apart. 
Thanks for reading. 

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