Today while I was walking in the pasture, visiting with the horses, I looked down and there lying in the dirt was a horse shoe. For a millisecond, my thought was, "Oh no, one of my horses has lost a shoe!" and then of course I realized that all my horses go barefoot. So that means this shoe was from some earlier era on the farm.
For want of a nail, the shoe was lost.
For want of a shoe, the horse was lost.
For want of a horse, the rider was lost.
For want of a rider, the battle was lost.
For want of a battle, the kingdom was lost.
And all for the want of horse shoe nail.
How much earlier, I wonder? I know there were horses here when this was a working farm in the early 1900s, but I don't know when the last one left. For all I know, before we came, it may have been 70 years since there was last a horse on this farm.
I picked up the old shoe, all rusty and caked with dirt the same color as the rust. It was a good, sturdy shoe, not much worn, of a pleasing size and symmetry. The instant it was in my hand I got a mental flash of a glossy bay horse: tall, rangy, and big-boned, high headed and clean-legged, with the wind ruffling his mane.
Pure imagination? Or could that be what the horse who wore this shoe really looked like? I'll never know. But I think I'll keep the shoe anyway. Perhaps it will bring us luck!