Sunday, January 20, 2013

'I Just Turned the Reins A-Loose'

"See, there was this stud my Grandpa had. A big, black, beautiful thing, boy, I'm telling you. Built long-legged with its head sticking way up and it would climb over like that. I had a picture of my dad with that horse hooked up to a buggy. And boy that horse's hair was just shining! Of course, I guess Dad had slicked him up.
"And there was a narrow road through what we called Little River. And Dad would drive that horse through Little River. And I heard him say, 'I didn't even hold onto the reins. I just turned the reigns a-loose, because if I held the reins, I'd pull the horse into one of them trees.' But he'd got through that swamp, and I know the hugs of that buggy wouldn't miss it by two to three inches. He'd tromp right through that swamp, just like it was a wide-open space.
"Before my Mom and Dad married, when they were dating, he carried her to what they called back then an all-day singing. He fastened on the horse, and somebody - kids, I think, playing around - scared the horse and made him break the leash he was on. And it tore Daddy's buggy up. It was just scattered across the field. Anyway, Daddy never did have another buggy anymore." -- T.J. Latham
(Click photo to enlarge.)
Read more in W. Jeff Bishop's novel, A Cold Coming, in February, 2013.

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