Ponygirl was born on April 3rd. A month later, on May 4th, Baybarr was born, right in our own little barn. I carried Ponygirl out to the barn to see him the morning he was born. Baybarr and Ponygirl grew up together. They were young together. But horses don’t live as long as people. Sadly, our beloved Baybarr passed away at the age of 24.
Baby and I are at the opposite end of the spectrum. When Baby is 25, I’ll be 80 years old. We’ll grow old together.
Jenny Joseph’s poem “Warning: When I Am An Old Woman” has enjoyed wide popularity, even spawning a “Red Hat Society”. An unattributed version for the horsey crowd has made the rounds on the internet. Here it is, slightly modified:
When I am an old horsewoman
I shall wear jeans and sweatshirts
And a funny hat that doesn’t suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on
white wine and carrots,
And sit in the alleyway of my barn
And listen to my horses munching hay.
I will sneak out when I should be washing dishes
And ride my beautiful old horse
Across the sunkissed meadow
If my old bones will allow.
And when people come to call,
I will lead them through my garden,
Out to the barn and show them
Stalls fresh with sweet pine shavings.
I will shovel and sweat and wear hay in my hair
And I will savour the joy of
A friend who waits in the morning light
With a soft nicker and patient eyes and we will stroll
Green pastures together.
Perhaps I will start practicing today
so that I am ready when suddenly
I am an old horsewoman.