As very small girls on the ranch, my sisters and I lived and breathed horses. And I mean literally. We were determined to morph ourselves into horses. Being the youngest, I was chosen to “go tell Mom that we are staying out all night so we can run around like horses!” The Wrath Of Ruth descended like a black cloud and all the girls went to the house.
My poor mother. I can still hear her words from years ago. I was impatiently letting her comb my hair…..”Stop stomping flies! You are not a horse! You are a Little girl!!” Ha! Little did she know. As soon as I could learn to make my skin twitch when a fly landed on me—I would be a horse. I never got that one figured out, but it wasn’t for lack of trying. Looking back now, I think I may have come across as an odd child, with my convulsions and stomping. Of course there were also many horse sounds to be imitated…………
We really had most of it down pretty well: long hair pulled into pony tails to swish, loping and trotting tirelessly in the heat, causing my Dad to question my mother as to ‘what the #%# is wrong with those kids?’ One thing that I personally found to be very important was the sound of my hooves on the ground. This problem was solved temporarily by my little black church shoes. They made the perfect sound! I didn’t care how small they were, I refused to quit wearing them………again, my Mom ruined everything……
Then one Christmas, it appeared. The book. The single most influential piece of literature of my young life. (maybe my old life too)
In short it is an awesome story about Hubert, the cat who wanted to be a horse. The barn rats tied washers to his feet. I won’t ruin it for you by revealing the entire plot, but I memorized every single picture. I searched everywhere for something to tie to my feet to replace my shoes . One of my older sisters tells of the morning that she heard me outside the window saying that I was unable to walk. Apparently, fearing some kind of paralysis, she ran outside…….to find me with bricks tied to my feet…….trying to clump.
Again, to the untrained eye, I may have seemed a bit odd…….and yes, I do still have the book, and if I twitch once in awhile, it’s no ones business