Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Flight. Fear.

“It was in America that horses first roamed. A million years before the birth of man, they grazed the vast plains of wiry grass and crossed to other continents over bridges of rock soon severed by retreating ice. They first knew man as the hunted knows the hunter, for long before he saw them as a means to killing other beasts, man killed them for their meat.

Paintings on the walls of caves showed how. Lions and bears would turn and fight and that was the moment men speared them. But the horse was a creature of flight not fight and, with a simple deadly logic, the hunter used flight to destroy it. Whole herds were driven hurtling headlong to their deaths from the tops of cliffs. Deposits of their broken bones bore testimony. And though later he came pretending friendship, the alliance with man would ever be but fragile, for the fear he'd struck into their hearts was too deep to be dislodged.

Since the Neolithic moment when first a horse was haltered, there were those among men who understood this.

They would see into the creature's soul and soothe the wounds they found there. For secrets uttered softly into pricked and troubled ears, these men were known as Whisperers.”

‘The Horse Whisperer’
Nicholas Evans

No comments:

Blog Archive