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The subject was horses

Bolt! Joyce WA August 2012

My wife is a horse fiend. Her mare just foaled a few months ago, so I’ve gone from a distant second to a stratospheric third place in domestic rankings.

Actually, the dogs are third and forth. Then the chickens. I have to do stuff like build horse barns, chicken coops and cook dinner most nights just to stay in the extended top 25.

I used to be preemptively aloof towards horses- I’m a dog guy and horses are just too goddamned indifferent. And difficult to photograph, at least with turn-of-the-century gear. They nicker and frolic until you are ready to trip the shutter then they turn, raise a tail and depart, leaving a giant steaming dump in the focus plane. So I mostly content myself with the inanimate, or the departed. Several years ago I took some memorial portraits of a horse we had to put down and this changed my attitude towards horses considerably. I still have trouble looking at the negatives, but the sweetness of the departed is seldom referenced in the living. Every time the mare pins her ears, snaps at me or shits right outside my window I fantasize about living in an apartment downtown. Or, at least, about leaving the gate open.