Thursday, 22 July 2010


- the contribution of the horse is immense

Dan Tucker's brewery horse
Borachio was his name
was a happy fleabag of a sort
with a free and fancy mane
and a silver shaving brush on his head
-he worked along Drury Lane

droddum dancing in the shafts
dead eye grin
snorting snottle box
rolling pin on view
trotting on his trotter cases
his clip clops echoing
through the neighbourhood
his dlip dlops ripening in the summer sun
and hiccius doccius
he took a drink himself
especially when the day was hot
for all the ale drapers would
pull him one
or two at Freeman's Quay

but that was an eternity ago
and now Borachio's blind
as a brickbat
and croaks like a frog
and his sinews crack
and he's thin
- and he's been replaced
by a flatback truck
and put to the pin
of the collar strapped
to midnight's cold meat cart
going down and up the Gravesend Road
where he draws a bier
for Peter Grimm



  1. I could say this one over and over rolls on the tongue and floats into your ears!

  2. Thank you Gerry. Much appreciated.

    I remember seeing a dray horse fall when it was turning a corner. It took 4 men to pull it to its feet. When I was a child a horse pulling a cart loaded with sacks of coal slipped and fell on a steep hill. The horse was thrashed for its troubles. These things are sad and stay in the mind. Horses are not machines. Like us they age, get aches and pains. They have their off days. But they can't speak and tell us what's wrong. And so we must learn to listen to them with our ears wide open.

  3. apropos the sounds: - it jigs along in a prancing way until " was hot"
    and then there is an uncertainty (sort of a half jíg along, a hiccup, ... something's going on but what?) and then "but that was an eternity..." slows him right down and there's a different slower more somber rhythm. and the sounds have changed from the "dancing...snorting...trotting"
    to "the flatback truck ... cold meat cart" etc.


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