A Horse Named Special Take

A red stallion, iridescent in the sunlight, stands on thick rubber mats. His coat shines like sequined cinnamon. Raw flesh, days old and drying, dangles from a wound on his chest the size of a shovel blade.

I lanced the abscess, says a tall, rawboned cowboy—proud, somehow, of the carnage.

The cowboy squints through a microscope at a sample of Special Take’s semen.

Special Take, tied to a metal ring bolted to a creosote-soaked post sunk into the dry ground, does not squint, does not consider the reproduction of humans worthy of his interest.

No human being deserves a horse like this.

No human being ever has done one single thing as beautifully as Special Take stands, tethered and maimed, on a shit-splattered rubber mat. 

Special Take is the flame that burns the forests of the sun, and we chattering apes—we are nothing in the face of him.


© Copyright 2020 by Jim Latham
Photo by Sheri Hooley on Unsplash

Thanks to Christina Ward.