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Horses in Poetry: The Jockey and Horse Retired: A Poem


Tim Truzy is a poet, short-story author, and he is currently working on several novels.

A Belgian mare and foal on an Amish farm.

A Belgian mare and foal on an Amish farm.

Why I Love Horses

Although Medina Spirit won the Kentucky Derby in 2021, I was fascinated when Justify claimed a victory over the other colts in the race in 2018. The fabulous creature would go on to be a Triple Crown winner. I watched and recalled all my experiences with these majestic beasts. My grandfather owned a horse and mule and as children, we would feed them out in the stable. His horse could be moody, but the mule had a pleasant disposition. I cherish those memories.

I remember the sad day Grandfather had to send them away. He said they were old and needed to die with dignity. They were taken to a place for aging animals to live out the rest of their days. Grandfather bought a tractor for the farm.

This poem is written for horse lovers; those of us who have had a relationship with these majestic creatures. My wife and I both rode horses for awhile and we still attend local horse shows at the county fairgrounds. Enjoy: The Jockey and His Horse Retires.

A bay Quarter Horse watches the photographer with curiosity

A bay Quarter Horse watches the photographer with curiosity

This bright chestnut is a Thoroughbred cross.

This bright chestnut is a Thoroughbred cross.

The Jockey and Horse Retired

Chasing blowing wind she would not excel,

Dreams put to sleep my saddened dry pillow,

Star light stable hoisting her to small fame,

Nightmares taught her to buck beyond willow.

Her light illuminated arenas,

Fans tossing dusty kisses at her trot,

Famous canter revolved around trophies,

Galloping to first place adorned her not.

A Paint Horse mare grazes.

A Paint Horse mare grazes.

Milky white drinking speed in her stern hooves,

To cascading applause she reigned in grace,

Circus ovations throughout the nation,

Pastures and stables now fancy her pace.

“Shall I read you Sandberg, dearest of mares?

A trip to take with Browning esteemed guest?”

She pawed the grassy ground fully brooding,

Lifting her head declining any quest.

Sister said, “She is not a bitter nag,

Old, tired, and needing retirement,

Placid lake bountiful forests surrounds,

Her emerald well-kept environment.”

A bay Clydesdale with splashy white markings.

A bay Clydesdale with splashy white markings.

They put her away; she put me away,

Borders in rooms with and without walls,

My mount a chair metallic legs and wheels,

My track wooden floors in nursing home halls.

Ah! But Asgard gods promised man and horse,

Riches never to be given freely,

Dishonesty brought the apocalypse,

Ride again we will when they can’t see me.

Four Horsemen will plead for her stout back,

Native People will stroke her lustrous mane,

Cowboys will bargain for her mighty strength,

As we travel the Trails of Gold with saints.

A fuzzy Shetland Pony

A fuzzy Shetland Pony

fun Facts About Horses

  • People in America love horses whether they are racing, performing at shows, or have encountered some injury. The cultural importance of horses to Americans encourages a respectful attitude toward the animals. Indeed, there are approximately 7 million people involved in the horse industry in the United States, and there are about 200 million horse owners, according to some estimates. Horses At the nonprofit, Flurry’s Hope – Blind Horse Rescue, are taken care of with tenderness although they cannot see. This rescue is believed to be the only one in the country which helps horses with loss vision.
  • In a suburb of Los Angeles, horses are helping to remind the general public that people of color played a part in developing America through the Compton Posse, another nonprofit. The Spanish mustang herd found at Corolla, N.C. became the symbol for the state’s horse in 2010.
  • A horse can run usually a few hours after birth. The height of these animals is measured in “Hands,” which is four inches. As a species, males have more teeth than females. Coincidentally, a horse’s teeth take up more room in its head than does its brain. Truthfully, horses can sleep standing up, and horses are grazers.
  • Until about three years old, a female horse is a filly, and a male at this age is called a colt. Mares are adult female horses, but a castrated male horse is a gelding. If he is not castrated, the adult male horse is referred to as a stallion. Arabian horses are known for endurance while Thoroughbreds are considered the fastest horses on the planet. In fact, the Thoroughbred, Secretariat, is recognized as the fastest racehorse of all time. But there are nearly 350 breeds of horses and ponies on Earth.
A group of Corolla Wild Horses on North Carolina's Outer Banks.

A group of Corolla Wild Horses on North Carolina's Outer Banks.

Let's Gallop Along

Refrain from trotting off just now. Or in horse based vernacular: hold your horses. Many expressions became part of the English language as a result of our love of these astounding equine. I’ve always imagined people discuss topics by coming up with colorful expressions in our past during events like hunting expeditions. Over the centuries, many of these sayings have become part of our language and included in literature, cinema, and poetry.

We are still incorporating horse related terms from fiction and real life into our language in modern times. For example, a Trojan horse is a malicious type of software. A favorite childhood basketball game involves players tossing the ball into the net from different locations on the court until one misses. He/she receives a letter every time a miss occurs until a person is the “horse.” Nonetheless, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. Please, join me in quenching our thirst for horse associated expressions below.

Common Expressions with Horse and Pony Association

  1. Eat like a horse: People use this expression to refer to a person who can consume an enormous amount of food in one setting.
  2. Get off your high horse: This phrase is used when requesting that someone stop behaving in a superior or arrogant manner.
  3. Horse about or around: This phrase refers to behaving foolishly.
  4. Horse of another or different color: Believed to originate with Shakespeare, this expression has come to mean different as opposed to similar.
  5. Horsepower: This is a unit of power measurement normally applied to machines, such as an automobile’s engine.
  6. I don’t have a horse in the race: Basically, this term refers to not having an invested interest in the outcome of something.
  7. Pony and trap: This refers to something of poor quality or trash.
  8. Pony up: Settle your debts or pay what is owed.
  9. Saddle up: People may use this term when they are making preparations to travel. For example: Saddle up! We leave in a few hours.
  10. Straight from the horse’s mouth: This term denotes the source is reliable and trustworthy.
  11. Strong as a horse: This is an expression meaning a person, machine, or animal is incredibly strong physically.
Foxhunting is still popular in some places.

Foxhunting is still popular in some places.


Nack, W. (2010). Secretariat: The making of a champion. New York: Hyperion.

Stewart, G. B., & Muñoz, W. (1996). Mustangs and wild horses. Minneapolis: Capstone Press.

Underwood, T. R. (2006). Thoroughbred racing and breeding: The story of the sport and background of the horse industry. Whitefish, MT: Kessinger Publishing.

© 2018 Tim Truzy


Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on January 27, 2021:

Arabian horses have one fewer lumbar vertebrae than other horses. It doesn’t subtract from their beauty and grace. I like all of these gorgeous beasts. Thanks for reading.

Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on May 08, 2020:

Imagine driving down a country road and encountering a horse in a field as you pass. I marveled at the graceful beast as it trodded beside the car. Then, it had theawareness to stop, posing for a picture. Horses do have personalities, indeed. Your visit is appreciated.

Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on September 23, 2019:

Regardless of when a jockey begins to train, a love usually develops between noble steed and the rider. The N.Y. Times reported on one such place in Indonesia. Jockeys on the island of Bima start riding as early as 6 years old. They compete in races and grow to love their horses. Although injuries may occur, races like the Regional Police Chief’s Cup are legal for these children to participate in. The financial benefit for families of these jockeys is substantial. I loved horses as a child, and I probably would have done such a thing if possible. Thanks for reading.

Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on September 17, 2019:

As Hurricane Dorian struck the Bahamas and then the Outer Banks of N.C., I was concerned about the beautiful wild mustangs on Carolla. According to the social media postings of the various agencies and individuals who take care of these gorgeous animals, the herd came through without any loss of life. Run on mustangs. Thanks for reading.

Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on September 14, 2019:

Called Europe’s Largest Equestrian Event, the Tribal Assembly of the Hun-Turkic nations features different types of horses as people show off their nomadic heritage in Hungary. Held yearly, the spectacular display occurs outside Bugac, Hungary. Various types of horses carry their riders in parades and mock battles, but as much as I enjoy horses, living a nomadic life would be difficult even if I could outrun the wind on my steed. Thanks for reading.

Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on April 25, 2019:

Presently, the Bureau of Land Management is the legal custodian of wild horses and burros as of 1971. The agency is attempting to find homes for some of those wild horses and offers a resource for potential owners at Wild Horses Online, where potential buyers can receive payment for adopting a horse. The government would like the population of burros and horses to be at about 26,000, but there are over 66,000 wild horses and 15,000 burros, according to an article in the N.Y. Times that quotes agency statistics. Mustangs tend to cost less to care for than some other breeds, and that may appeal to some buyers. However, once a bond is formed with a horse, the breed is less important than the friendship. Thanks for reading.


Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on April 16, 2019:

Last week, I visited one of the barrier islands along the coast of Virg. and MD. This place was Assateague. We saw a mare nursing a foal and took some pictures. It was really fun. It was quite an adventure which I hope to do again. Thanks for reading.


Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on February 04, 2019:

Hi, Nell,

I read it really takes leg strength to stay on a horse for a considerable amount of time. I can see why you were cautioned to avoid doing so.

However, I've seen circus acts, acrobats flipping from horse to horse, almost a ballet.

I'm glad you made a great decision. Otherwise, I would miss your wonderful sense of humor and great writing as well as your supportive attitude toward the HP community.

Thanks again for another visit.

Much respect and admiration,


Nell Rose from England on February 04, 2019:

That was great Tim! I loved horses when I was little, only I did ballet quite seriously, and they said no horse riding! argh! lol! brought back memories!

Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on January 13, 2019:

One of the things I learned about these creatures: If you want a stable relationship, there is no substitute for a horse. All joking aside, a horse's heart can weigh ten pounds! That's a lot of lovin' indeed! Just don't walk behind a horse, you may get a kick out of life. Literally.

Thanks for reading.


Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on November 28, 2018:

For the holiday last week, I had an opportunity to visit a friend of mine in TX. We rode at a ranch a few miles away. I had the pleasure of riding a Spanish mustang. I learned the Spanish mustangs were bred for endurance. My guide Vicky at the Karma Farms, the ranch, was very helpful.

My wife loved it as much as I did. In the process, I can see how horses and their jockeys become so close.

Frankly, if I could have spent more time with the horse I was riding named Benita, I could see a bond building.



Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on July 02, 2018:

Thank you, Berlie,

I appreciate your kind comment.



Verlie Burroughs from Canada on July 01, 2018:

'The Jockey and His Horse Retires': What a beautiful poem and page Tim! The photos are stunning.

Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on May 15, 2018:

Thanks, Jo. Reading your wonderful article about the famous Native American lady made me remember how Native People really had a special relationship with horses. Thank you for partly inspiring me and reminding me of the fondness I have for these majestic creatures.



Jo Miller from Tennessee on May 15, 2018:

Beautiful poem and photos and a lovely tribute to your childhood memories. Thanks for sharing this.

Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on May 14, 2018:

Curiously enough, when I started writing this poem, I was contemplating the nobility of horses, as Sean stated. I reread the poem by Carl Sandberg 1857-(1967), entitled: “Horse Fiddle Poem.” I also reread the work by Robert Browning, entitled: How They Brought the Good News of Ghent to Aix. They both were inspirations for this poem, but I wanted something a little in between these two.

It didn’t occur to me until after I wrote this poem that “Browning” also refers to a type of weapon – Was my character considering suicide after losing his horse? Or was he planning to read a poem? Or both? The emotions and the experience did not reveal such knowledge to the author either as I wrote this.

The jockey mentions Asgard, the mythical home of the gods of Norway because the paradise fell after dishonest dealings with a man and his horse. The character apparently felt cheated in some way as well.

I mentioned the Four Horsemen of the biblical end-times because I think every person who loves their horse feels their animal is a champion, capable of the mightiest of tasks, even if the horse never wins any competition. Just a glimpse into my thoughts I wanted to share.




Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on May 13, 2018:


My wife used to ride horses and did some competition at horse shows. When I was young, I didn't follow the horse races much, but now, they are fun to watch.

Sometimes, when my grandfather's horse was particularly nice, I would chat with him. He seemed to respond to my questions with snorts and little head gestures. I always laughed because I think he thought he was human. His name was Zeus, and he certainly thought he ran the farm.

Thanks again.

Comments from all of you inspire pleasant memories. Much respect,



Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on May 13, 2018:

Thanks, Sean,

We like to visit the herd at Corolla because they are in a beach area. I'm glad my work and Lori's pictures helped to bring memories to you.

As always,

Thanks for your comment.



Tim Truzy (author) from U.S.A. on May 13, 2018:

Thanks, Nikki. I do love these animals. They have contributed so much to humanity over the last four thousand years.

I appreciate your positive comment.



manatita44 from london on May 13, 2018:

Some elegant and majestic-looking horses and a great poem. With my grandfather it was Optune, Pontious Pilate and Captain Carlos.

With my father in NY it was Affirm and Alydar. Always neck and neck. Steve Cauthen was around then. Excellent work!

Ioannis Arvanitis from Greece, Almyros on May 13, 2018:

A noble poem, for a noble animal, from a noble heart. Thank you, my brother, for the beauty of this poem. I always loved these great animals. For a reason, I never managed to explain; I always felt that horses are more clear expressions of God than other animals! And they have healing abilities too! They use horses for therapeutical reasons!

I will never forget the picture of a herd of wild horses we met on a Greek mountain when I was ten years old. They were running free, and that was magical to me.

Thank you for reminding me this picture!

Much Love!


Nikki Khan from London on May 12, 2018:

I just loved to read about different kinds of horses, and your poetry added more charm to their beauty.

I love watching them racing and riding for pleasure.Thanks for sharing such great informative insights about them.

Happy Mother’s day! bless you and your family always!

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