Heaven in a meadow

4 08 2011

The northwest “meadow” is the new east pocket.

There’s grass. There’s water.

Horses are there.

Four beautiful bands … and Kreacher’s – and Duke – were just to my left.

Beautiful day. How could I have thought he wouldn’t still be there?

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Boy band

13 07 2011

Is there anything as fun as watching bachelors? 🙂

Most of our older bachelors have found families, and we have a new generation of bachelors. They’ve been together, they’ve paired up, they’ve split, they’ve found older boys, they’ve found boys slightly less old. During last week’s visit, all the young boys were with Aspen and Sundance (who have their own history), and they were all hanging out close to Luna’s band, which has Lt. Steeldust (formerly the band stallion) and satellite Mouse (and those two have gone back and forth in recent weeks). This visit, Mouse was entertaining the boys while Steeldust and Butch stayed close to the girls (Luna and Alpha).

Bachelor boy butts. 🙂 Might as well start with a chuckle, eh? In back is Milagro, then left to right: Sundance, Cuatro, Ze, Sage and Aspen.

Luna’s band: Steeldust at back left, Butch, Gideon barely visible, Alpha, Luna and napping Varoujan. He kept lying down … and the girls would graze away, and he’d get up and follow … and lie back down … and they’d graze away …

The little with mama Luna and “auntie” Alpha.

Sage, Cuatro and Mouse

Butch finally decided to leave the girls (and Steeldust) and come check out the competition, all of whom were politely respectful. That’s Sage he’s stretching toward, Ze to Sage’s left, Mouse in back and Aspen at right. Who spots napping Varoujan?

Varo napping while Cuatro grazes.

Ze walking past napping Varo. He was followed by Aspen – most of the boys are to the left, and Varo’s band is to the right. None of the stallions made so much as a threatening flick of the ear toward the little boy.

Sundance mostly ignored the goings-on. Milagro tended to stick back with him. He’s quite a bit smaller than the other colts, as you can see in the first pic of their butts toward me. He, Sage, Ze and Cuatro are all 2 years old. Sundance is probably about 6; Aspen and Mouse are probably about 6-8ish.

Mouse, right, and Cuatro.

Mouse, front, and Sage.

Ze – that’s Cuatro, grazing, at right.

Ze and Cuatro again – comfortable with each other. They’ve been together and apart … the pal-pairs are Sage and Ze and Cuatro and Milagro.

Just makes me smile. 🙂 From left: Cuatro, Aspen, Sage and Mouse.

And wider, to show some of the beautiful background – looking eastish.

Varoujan napping, framed by grazing daddy Butch.

Can you even stand how cute he is?! Just a tired little boy who’s been playing in the mud and is now all tuckered out. 🙂

Taking steps to convince mama it’s lunch time. How DO little boys get so covered in mud?! 🙂

I caught up on some pix of ponies today – more coming.





More miscellaneous (magic)

14 06 2011

No rhyme or reason, really, just beautiful horses. 🙂

Queenly Alpha.

If Alpha is a queen, Luna is an empress. She continually amazes me with … with everything about her.

Little Varoujan was named by our visiting Armenian journalist Aghavni, you might remember. My friend N, visiting this day, wanted to get pix of him to send to her. We visited with them out in a “meadow,” then moved on and stopped again to wait for Grey/Traveler’s band to move out from the pond. After they did, we walked down to check its depth (so shallow, you can see the mud and mat-like vegetation (?)). We also saw these crazy tadpoles?! HUGE. Leggy, turning-into-frogs creatures they were that gave us shadowy glimpses before darting into mud or mat. We also started seeing flashes of glittery greenish-goldish things that looked suspiciously scaled.

We started to move around the edge of the pond, and so engrossed were we that when I happened to look back, I was stunned to see Luna, leading her band to the pond! I nudged N, and we continued on around and sat down, trying to be as quiet and inconspicuous as possible – though obviously the horses weren’t at all bothered by our presence.

N had me in tears yesterday, telling me how magical was her visit to the basin and how she couldn’t stop thinking about the horses.

I start thinking, “maybe it’s just me.” “Maybe I’m crazy that after all this time, not only do they STILL affect me, they affect me – every time – more than the last time.”

But no. It’s not just me. These amazing horses truly are magic.

Handsome Mouse. One of my favorite bachelors. With any luck, he’ll be left and will find himself a mare …

Big brother Gideon resting his chin over little brother Varoujan’s heiny, mama Luna close at hand.

Spook and Bruiser. We watched them between leaving Luna’s and waiting for Grey’s to leave the pond. We wandered all around that day, and like N remarked, we almost always saw Spook and Big B no matter where we were.

Varoujan skipping ahead to Luna as they neared the pond. Alpha’s expression is directed more to Gideon, bringing up the rear, than to baby Varo. You can just see the edge of the pond at the bottom of the photo, and N and I have moved around it to sit down out of their way.

I couldn’t decide which perspective I liked better. Gideon adores his “auntie” Alpha.

Baby Varoujan and mama Luna

Big bro and little bro

Loved how big brother and mama’s tail “frame” the littlest mister.

I posted one similar to this last week … Couldn’t resist this one, too.

Another similar one … I’ll end it here for today …

If you could explain magic, it wouldn’t be. I can’t explain it. I know it. I believe in it.





Just one, of two

11 06 2011

Alpha and Varoujan, backlit by afternoon light. Pretty, pretty, the ponies.





Faces, happy

8 06 2011

I love first-time visitors! My wonderful friend N came with me today, fresh on the heels of her completion of a master’s degree. I think we had a wonderful celebratory day!

Some teasers:

Faces, beautiful.

Face, adorable.

Faces, beloved.

N, hope you had a wonderful day! I loved sharing it with you! And congratulations!





Dawn and on

24 05 2011

Still have lots to share from almost two weeks ago … looking forward to getting back to the basin this week, weather-permitting. Loved getting all that moisture (including snow!), but I can hardly stand not having been in the basin for two weeks. I want to see it GREEN, like we’ve hardly had yet this year (the green-up was as subtle as I’ve ever seen it, and the cheat grass has already gone to purple), and I want to see ponds brimming with water. I want to see all the babies and families! Don’t know what I’ll find … and that’s why I’m so eager to get back out!

Juniper, mama Kestrel and daddy Comanche. For whatever reason, I just love knowing Comanche is a full-fledged daddy … He has taken such good care of Winona.

Baby girl in the spotlight

Isn’t she divine?

And the whole world is new and interesting and beautiful, to be explored and marveled at.

Then they left the shadows of the trees for the morning sunlight.

All things bright and beautiful …

All things wise and wonderful …

It was a gorgeous morning. If snow fell in the basin last week with the rain, I wonder what she made of that? What all the babies – tough little mustang babies, made of stern gossamer stuff – made of it? I hope they delighted in it and kicked up their tiny heels and ran for joy of life!

We wandered over the pinon-juniper island and found Luna’s band already hard at work at nap time. There’s just about nothing better than napping in that delicious morning sunshine after the day’s first trip to the water hole. At least, that’s my take on it. 🙂

Alpha was just to the left. I think Mouse was a little back, also to the left.

Zeroing in … Steeldust is likely Varoujan’s granddaddy (likely sire of Butch).

The littlest mister laid down …

And big brother Gideon came thiiiiiiis close to joining him … His nodding head dropped so low, I was sure he was going to lie down, but he never did.

Meanwhile, just a little distance away …

Big sister Winona, fascinated by the baby …

Ha! Mama Kestrel was just steps away to the left. Pretty soon, these two will be playing together and running circles around mama and daddy!

Handsome daddy Comanche

He stays close …

🙂

Baby girl couldn’t resist the call of nap time, either …

Like mama Luna, like daughter Kestrel … I really don’t know how to articulate how I feel when I sit with these horses, in the sunlight of a beautiful spring morning, a million miles away from anywhere and everywhere. It’s the most incredible gift to be able to do that, feeling their quiet magic all around. I am grateful beyond words … I am amazed beyond reason … It keeps me going back, it makes me do everything I can to ensure their survival in the best conditions possible. Above all things but my own family, they are my light in this world.

Juniper

Luna the beautiful and wise, mother of (at least) Kestrel, Ember, Hannah, Gideon and Varoujan; grandmother of (at least) Winona, Fierro and Juniper. We are so blessed to have her (she came from Sand Wash Basin in 2001).

Varo and Luna, Gideon and Alpha in back.

Do you see all their eyes? Luna and Varo, of course, Alpha … and Gideon? I love trying to capture images like this – puzzle pieces of family life.

Baby gives mama a schnuzzle …

Mama gives baby a schnuzzle! I love how her mobile lips are stretched out to him.

Mama, always a comforting presence …

Loved the light on him against the shadowed arroyo wall behind him.

Just love … just always simply love.





Till dawn

19 05 2011

Pre-dawn is a truly lovely time of day. These photos were taken from about half an hour before dawn to just after, when the light was just kissing the trees in our corner of heaven.

Cinch

Liberty gives Cinch an early morning nuzzle.

Pretty Gaia with Liberty

Luna’s band at one of the ponds. From left: Steeldust, Gideon, Alpha, Varoujan, Luna, Butch and Mouse.

Mama Luna and her boys. She’s actually drinking out of a puddle there. I’m not sure why she drank there rather than from the main part of the pond.

Love all their faces. Butch is looking at Comanche’s band, who are at the other side of the pond.

Mama Kestrel (Luna’s daughter), Juniper and Winona (Luna’s granddaughters!) get a drink at the pond.

Winona and Comanche

Comanche, watching Luna’s band.

Sweet Varoujan gives mama a nuzzle.

Off to graze.

Juniper and Kestrel

Good morning, beautiful girls!

Daddy, Juni and mama -dawn. You can’t miss that piece sticking out from his nostril … I’m not sure what he did there, but it does seem to be a piece of skin that he ripped somehow. Doesn’t seem to bother him for grazing or drinking. He’s looking at Grey/Traveler’s band.

Peaceful, beautiful, all right with the world. Out here … it’s easy to believe in everything that should be right with the world …

What more to say? 🙂