Friday, August 7, 2009

Heraclitis and Herd Dynamics

Kevin gives the Sorraia x Kiger Mustang studcolt, Interessado, a much appreciated itching on his chest

The sun is new every day.
You cannot step twice into the same rivers, for fresh waters are ever flowing in upon you.
--Heraclitis (1892 translation by John Burnet)

The sixth century Greek philosopher, Heraclitis, pointed out to us that continual change is the way of things. Here at the Ravenseyrie Sorraia Mustang Preserve, the concept of "all things are in flux" plays out before our eyes on a daily basis.

Explaining Heraclitis' fragments of thought, Bertrand Russell tells us, "...the real world consists in a balanced adjustment of opposing tendencies. Behind the strife between opposites, according to measures, there lies a hidden harmony or attunement which is the world...thus strife is the motive principle which keeps the world alive."

The wind speaks to me, as an elder speaks to one she is mentoring. One thing she blows into my listening ear, flows in front of my eyes and brushes over my awakened skin is that impermanence is a fundamental element of this plane of existence.

Somewhere between pondering change, impermanence and the harmony of opposites, an idea is forming of where I am to go next with my relationships with horses. When the summer days give way to the slower pace of autumn, I should have a good essay to post in this journal. For now, my dialogue must rely mostly on photos.

On Sunday, the 26th of July, Altamiro drove his second born son, Interessado out of the family band.

Morning found him grazing with Zeus, Mistral and Animado.

While most days, Altamiro forbids his group of mares and foals to come up for breakfast oats, he, himself, will slip out and disrupt breakfast for the others as we see in this next sequence of photos. Sometimes, he will chase one of the others, but most times everyone snatches oats from pan to pan and then each goes their separate ways.

One morning, while hanging out with Altamiro's band, Silvestre was in a fully prone nap and the mares, along with Fada and Encantara, all moved off quite a distance looking for better grazing. Altamiro thought that this was a precarious situation and went over to discuss the matter with Silvestre's mother, Ciente.
Apparently, Ciente wasn't taking the matter seriously enough, so Altamiro snaked his head low and drove her toward Silvestre at a speedy pace, then hastened the two of them in the direction of the rest of the herd. "No one should be left unattended!", was the very clear message delivered by this young stallion.

To close, I'm sharing a few photos taken over the past few weeks which I liked a lot, and also am treating readers to two video clips of the frolicking foals, Encantara and Silvestre.

The magnificent draft mule, Jerry!



leah astrup said...

What great videos!! I could watch them play all day. I don't know how you get any thing else done. :)


Lynne Gerard said...

Hello Leah!
Thank you for continuing to follow this blog, I really appreciate it.

Those video clips do lift one's heart, don't they?
Encantara and Silvestre are very expressive youngsters and delight in each other's company. I'm thankful that our preservation project creates an environment where there are more than one foal, so that these youngsters can enjoy companionship and playtime.

"I could watch them play all day. I don't know how you get any thing else done. :)"

There have been time when I have contemplated closing my art gallery and staying home all day to learn even more from being with horses in this wilderness environment, discovering new ways of interactions and training as well as focusing more on writing about things that I feel are important.

But, for now, it feels right to split my energies between two passions, and thankfully with my "job" I can reflect upon horsey things while I work with no deleterious effects on my work. Art and horses...a natural fit!

Janet Grant said...

What a gorgeous horse Interessado has turned out to be, and what a lovely photo. Looks as if you have spent hours brushing and bathing him :-)
Janet Grant

Lynne Gerard said...

Hello, Janet!
Thank you for taking the time to visit the blog. I agree, Interessado is growing into a gorgeous fellow. His half-sister, Fada, looks like a smaller, feminine version of him. She's still in the family band, hasn't been ousted yet by big daddy.

Looks are deceiving, btw...he is definitely sleek and shiny, but when ever I'm done giving itches and caresses, my hands are thickly coated with dirt.

Of course, that kind of dirt is heavenly to those who are in love with all things horsey!

Anonymous said...

Lynn - my wife Suzanne had a table beside you at the Gore Bay Farmers Market selling her jewelry.
she bought quite a large batch of your hand painted cards - which our daughter used as wedding invitations to a rather unusual wedding to take place her on the Island next Saturday.
Just writing to say - your paintings are great - as is the journal of your horses...and since I admired them enough to put a link to your blog on my Facebook and Myspace sites - which are visited by quite a few folks - here in Canada and around the world - you may get a few more hits in these coming days...

Paul Darlaston