If you have spent any length of time wandering the dust-ridden halls of this blog, then you might just know that I spend a decent amount of my time in the saddle. Especially during the summer months – odd considering that I live in Texas where the summer months are known for the blazing sun, triple digits, and mud cracks large enough to be portals to distant lands . . . or at least, the center of the earth.
Having spent so many hours in the saddle, I’ve come to realize that riding is like music.
Each horse has a distinct rhythm. The beat of their hooves, the varying pace, the distinct walk, jog, lope, and run that is all their own, contributes to their unique melody.
Each saddle sings its own song. An old saddle with its well worn leather skirt, wooden tree, and metal pieces frosted with rust creaks a different ballad, a tale of miles already traveled, than the squeak of a new saddle with leather stiff and unbroken, and metal pieces still jangling to find their proper place.
Each landscape offers a different harmony. The drum of hooves over hard packed earth differs from the harsh scuffling through dead leaves lining the forest floor or the soft thudding through the arena sand.
For me, part of the joy in riding is discovering the beautiful melody that each different horse, saddle, and landscape affords. Finding the horse’s rhythm so that horse and rider can move as one. Hearkening to the ballad of the saddle and listening to the tale it unfolds.
There is a sort of grand symphony present in the world around us, if we just have ears to hear it. The whisper of a turning page. The orchestral chirping of crickets in the night. The blazing glory of a sunrise. Each is a song in itself, an offering to the praise of the One who created it all, the Singer who set the song in place.
So, when I weary of writing and the formerly pleasant clacking of the keys as I type becomes only slightly less grating than the scraping of nails across a chalkboard (one of the worst sounds in the world!), then I take to the saddle once more, lose myself in the rhythm of hooves, and allow the cares and worries of the world to fall from my shoulders, borne away upon a fleeing wind.
Are there any sounds that seem to bear more melody than others to you? Have any others become enchanted, as I, by the song of the saddle?