I did not win

Hello fellow bloggers and blog readers.

There is only a quick bit of me garbling on this one as I wanted to upload some writing. Basically I entered a competition (in writing duh!) to write something based around the horse racing industry. I was not allowed to publish this bit of text so I kept it in my archives after submitting it but got back an email yesterday saying I didn’t win. So instead of falling into the doldrums I thought why not show it to the public at least once! It took me approximately four hours to write and for those of you who are horsey, you may be able to appreciate where I’m coming from as I used a lot of my experiences to write this rather unusual set of prose:

A letter from a stable lad describing his life in the racing world.

It is not often, as a part of the human race, that we consider the rest of our fellow man. No indeed, it seems our problems are more important, our heartaches more painful and our joys unsurpassed by others. Not one man among us could dispute this without revoking his own inconsistent human character a feat as yet unattainable even to the best of us.

I do not claim to be better than others. I am inconsistent and I do not frequently consider other’s problems before my own. I do however see. I see everything that comes and goes in the position I hold in life. I watch you all, not as a better, no, rather as an inferior. With a voice that is neither recognized, nor heeded. With views derived from less experience than others but with an equal right to be counted among theirs. There is always the possibility I am right, however much others discredit it.

In a world where the currency is luck, I doubt my position shall ever change. I do the jobs no one else wishes to and because they keep me fit; I shall surely being doing them longer than those in other employments. I will not better my situation beyond a certain stage, which is the sad truth that so many like me cannot accept. Without the money others have I can never achieve what I may wish to and sometimes I dwell on this.

What I can lay claim to in this world however, is the ability not only to watch others but to watch the horses they own. I spend more time with your horse than you. I spend more hours caring for that beast you prize than you ever will. You talk about your horse to others for hours, I barely say more than a few words when I am with him all day. As a result I know your horse better than you ever will in this life.

I am there in the morning, I am the mucker, I am the exerciser, the one who washes him, the one who feeds him again and again and I put him in his stable at night. I have sat up long into the night while he had colic. I have nursed the injury he sustained because he was pushed too far. I have stemmed the bleeding when he gashed himself on a rusty nail.

I know whether your horse is bolshie or timid. I know whether he nips or nudges. I know why he is off his food. I know why he cannot make the time you want him to. I know that after five years he shall be obsolete in this place and I shall get to know another.

While I watch over your animals, I see you and your associates. I can see the discontent sometimes, the exuberance winning creates and the way you all speak about one another when each other’s backs are turned whether good or bad.

You may well ask why I chose this profession? But that would be entirely the wrong question. I did not choose this profession, nor did it choose me. I chose horses, not a job but a love. I chose racehorses in all their might and splendor. I chose a world in which the poor and rich, the peasants and royalty can join together and have the same chances. The same joy in winning and the same frustration in losing. As someone once said,

A Dog looks up to a man, a cat looks down on a man, but a patient horse looks a man in the eye and sees him as an equal.’

This is a sport of equality even if it has been a long time striving to come to this point.

This is a sport, which humans have watched, backed, participated and worked in for millennia. A sport where unless you are the best, you will lose. I may be nothing and I may have no remembrance after I die but I do not need it. I would have lived within a legacy that shall be passed down from generation to generation. As long as racing exists, horses shall never go extinct. Racing shall never fade out, time has already tested it and it has withstood him for centuries.

The horse is an entirely different animal to us humans, for they have found a way to work with us when we still find it difficult to work with one another. It is true; there are minor arguments, occasionally ending in major injuries. These are forgiven however because of what they are and because the majority of these arguments are caused by the human rider not the horse.

Horses have shown an incredible quality to submit and be mastered by us as though created for that sole purpose. Cannot the champions of this species be traced to the racehorse? A creature who has harnessed it’s own ability for flight to become an integral part of tradition and culture.

As with these beasts I lay claim to being part of tradition. I shall be trampled, misunderstood and in some cases mistreated, but I am akin to the race-horse; I do not give up the fight, I do not quit the race, I shall pass the finish line, even if the glory will forever pass to others. I am, a stable-lad.

Word Count914.

By Philippa Jane Keyworth

So thoughts? Questions? General viewing points?


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