At one time, I was a girl with an entire herd of imaginary horses. I had a grey Arabian stud named Skywise (after my hero from Elf Quest) and a brown thoroughbred named Tulip. In my world, they were married. I rode these horses and their offspring through my growing woods and over golden hills where more real mustangs lived. They would adopt play names with me when I pretended I was Robin Hood or Guinevere. But then when Tulip had her second foul, I got some startling news from my best friend: It was too early for Tulip to be having another baby! Scared, I sent her away to a horse doctor in Montana and adopted a what I called a Blue Meringue. He was tall, like a Clydesdale with the long hair over his hooves, but as graceful as a friesian. I can't remember what his name was, but he was a great jumper. Fantastic! Like a Pegasus preparing for flight. He was my champion. I think Skywise was jealous.
Around this time, my brother Daniel was born and when that happens mothers don't cook after birth often times. Maybe back in Arthur's days or when the female samurai needed to get back into the rice paddies. Any way, she was bedridden. Families we knew brought us meals and one Saturday it was Elise's family's turn to bring dinner. I was so excited to show Elise this Blue that I downed my turquoise flare dress (short bell sleeves and a skirt that was at least 8 yards!) with purple flowers. It was gorgeous and went with his grey blue fur perfectly. I took him into the orchard and ran laps with him before practicing some jumps. I was so excited to show her. I switched leads, walked, trotted, and cantered. I was sweating in the July heat and the grass wearing down. I had been out there with him for three hours, never stopping. I wanted her to see him running with me astride him in my blue dress. I waited and waited, ran and jumped. The sun began to crawl down into the east and the shade of the apple and pear trees stretched out. I was about to give up when that familiar, huge, old brown van came down the road. I kicked the Blue into a gallop and leaped high over a fence post, hoping to the high heavens that she had seen me jump. I don't know.
They were late because our house was "new" to most of our friends and located in No Where Leavenworth. Elise still lived in a suburb and I tried hard to seem at ease in the country. Eventually, it became the easiest thing for both of us. But that's another story.
They brought a meal of I don't remember what and plant. Yes, a plant. It was wilty and dying from falling over in the back of that amazing van. I took it, even though her mother insisted that she take it back and get us a new one. I wanted that plant. That one that had come all that with them and fallen over while they ceaselessly tried to find our house. I watered it and tried to revive it over the next few months. But the summer was too much for it. It came all that way. It fell over and got hurt. It got lost. But it made it to our home. I tried to heal it for about a month. One day, I came out to water it and found the leaves had finally fallen and shriveled up. What did it mean?
Tulip came back from back from Montana and it turned out she wasn't pregnant. She had a stomach tumor and wasn't going to make it to the winter of that year. I told Elise and we mourned as long as we could for the imaginary horse. After she died, I sold Skywise and his filly. I kept the Blue for a while but at some point he ran away. I bet his descendants are out there somewhere.
I don't know why I wanted to save that plant. I don't know why I sold Skywise. Where did the Blue go? Why was it vital to my young self for Elise to see me on him jumping over fences? I wanted to impress her. Why? Who can say. Just a kid. It's a beautiful memory though. here is a small level of complexity and emotion to it and it's one I've had on my mind lately.
I wanted this post to be longer, but I've got to catch up on her blog as well. ^_^