What I heard from a horse herd: Listen with your WHOLE body!
I’m afraid of horses. So, it’s odd that I have designed writing workshops centered around interacting with an equine herd. Lucky for me, my love for animals has outweighed my fears and I get to spend time visiting with rescue horses at Flag Ranch. Over the years, those magnificent horses have taught me a whole lot about listening, and ultimately, about opening to creativity…
We were a group of nine women, holstered with pens we decorated with nature and a medley of journals. We set out into the uncut, hilly pastures of Flag Ranch to visit with the free-roaming horses. Our mission: to connect with the horses and explore how they “listen.” Then we wrote, we shared, we wrote some more…
by Al-listen Fragakis
Find a place where a minute feels as long and wonderful
as a summer day
Horses know all about it
Stroll in and they’ll tell you
But don’t ask directly
not with your ears
with your whole body
Twitches and itches reveal the door
Lean into the earth’s heartbeat
feel it with your feet,
not your eardrums
Find a drowsy-looking horse
you think he’s not paying attention
you think he is just staring at blades of grass
He doesn’t listen like us
Soon his curious muzzle will lift
to sniff your soul
If he trusts you, he’ll show you the way
It’s the place where a minute feels as long and wonderful as a summer day
Horses listen with their whole bodies! The beautiful thing about whole body listening is that it halts the mind chatter and gently pulls you into the present. Time S T R E T C H E S before you like a big open meadow. For me, this is the magical space where creativity comes galloping out of my heart and into my pen.
If you’re looking to expand time and let more of your creative juju flow, I suggest that you go hang out with a horse. Our next Writing With Horses day retreat is Saturday, October 21st, 2017.
p.s. This creative expansion also works when you spend quality time observing a cow, an ant, a butterfly, really any creature.
**Join me on October 21st, 2017 for the next Writing with Horses retreat! Give yourself the gift of connecting with your own spirit through this horse immersion and creative writing experience. We’ll spend our time slowing taking in the vast hills, visiting with the horses and journaling in circle. Kimberly Carlisle, director of Flag Ranch, and I will be c0-facilitating this special day. No writing or horse experience necessary. Limited to 10 participants.