Me, Donkeys and Giant Horses


I felt a strong connection with Piper, on of the horses at Blue Star Equiculture
I felt a strong connection with Piper, on of the Percherons at Blue Star Equiculture.

The almost full moon was pale in the darkening sky when I locked up the chickens for the night.  I didn’t intend to visit the donkeys, but Lulu was standing by the side of the barn looking at me.  And I  wanted to see them, somehow I felt like something had changed between us since spending the day at Blue Star Equiculture, a rescue farm for working horses, mostly Percherons, Shires and Clydesdales,  in Massachusetts.

I walked into the barn yard and the three donkeys surrounded me.  I scratched their necks and under their chins and pictured the giant horses I saw today.  I made space in my heart and silently I told the donkeys that I was with their cousins.  I let the feeling of what it was like to stand under a horses chin scratching her neck, a horse so big I couldn’t reach the top of her head, trusting that she wouldn’t hurt me.  And I’m not really sure what that feeling is, how to explain it, to be walking around with these massive animals and not be afraid.    It felt like kindness and wisdom and a shared history.   Like an innate knowledge of each other.

Sometimes, when I’m with the donkeys, I open my heart to them.  I let myself fully feel whatever I’m feeling, which I sometimes have words for and other times don’t.  I can feel the emotion passing from me to them and back again, until the boundaries between us disappear. So it’s no longer me and Fanny or me and Lulu, it’s just the emotion and we become one in it.   And it’s more than just a connection between me and donkey.  It’s the feeling that I’m not alone, that I’m as much a  part of the natural world as the mud under my feet and the trees in the woods.   That I belong.

And I think those giant horses make me feel the same way.   But because they’re so big, they remind me of the powerful forces of nature, the ones that can easily destroy.  Yet they choose not to.  They choose to live with us peacefully and in partnership.

So this evening, when I was scratching Fanny behind her ears and Simon pressed his head into my back, I felt they understood what I had experienced today.  And we passed the story back and forth between us until  time and distance dissolved and we were all standing there together, me the donkeys and the giant horses.  All one.

16 thoughts on “Me, Donkeys and Giant Horses

  1. What an epiphany! Just reading your words made me feel free and peaceful! Lovely and grounding. Thank you Maria.

  2. I find it interesting how you pass the emotions from you to the donkeys and back. I’ve had that experience with children, wordlessly passing trust and love forward to them and feeling it come back. I enjoy your writing.

    1. I’ve never been able to make that connection with children Cynthia, although I just may not have been open to it when I was around children. I like the idea that it’s the same though.

  3. You feel it too! I have this at the stable with a certain boy horse I work with. But even in a corral where there’s several horses I know it’s the same. We share the mud, the trees and the sky. We are all natural. My horse gentler Jacqui,myself and the breeze. This is the essence of natural horsemanship!

  4. I love what you have written and felt about the horses and donkeys, Maria. Anyone who is open to receiving their wisdom and affection will be enriched by it deep in his or her soul. It feeds and protects me every day of my life.

  5. Dear Maria, What you have written is so full of imagery and peace! Who would have thought that a creature nearly as big as an elephant could give inner peace?!? Yet, your photo captures the same thing. I agree with Cynthia that the only time I’ve had this experience (except with my German Shepherd, Ellie) is with children. Annie

    1. maybe it’s that children have not learned to put up the barriers that we adults have learned to use Annie. They are more open to experience and feeling, less of the mind.

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