Sunday, March 25, 2012

merlin's brow

Merlin's tack is nothing to brag about. It comes from a discount online saddlery. We don't require anything posh to learn the dance steps. But I did spurge on this one item back before I even signed any contracts. This is something I do. When I wanted sheep, I bought books on sheep before ever touching the fleece. When I wanted a house, I drew a picture of it with a black dog by my side and carried it in my pocket. And when I wanted this impossible horse, I found a bridle maker to work some magic with me.

This brow band came from England, from a leather bridle maker who stitched beautiful tack around 300GPB a set. Out of my range, but I could afford this one special piece. It was mailed across the ocean to Cold Antler. It came in the mail the same day the cheap bridle did. It is soft and supple to the touch, and white thread shines with a Celtic 4-part knot. A symbol of no-beginning, and no ending. A constant and everlasting connection between two souls. I wear a Celtic knotwork necklace of Epona riding a horse, and he wears this. In Celtic lore there is this notion of Anam Chara, it means soul partners. It doesn't mean lovers, or soul mates like modern cultures talk about them. It means an advisor and mentor, someone to learn from and grow with. People think the term started around the medieval monasteries, when young monks needed guidance and consolation from more seasoned wearers of the cloth. The term has survived to mean everything from childhood best friends to soldiers fighting side by side. I like to see it the old way, as a student and a teacher who care.

If there was ever a Anam Chara for this scrappy farm girl...

it is this horse.


Blogger Mist said...

Just lovely! It would be wonderful to see your necklace side-by-side with the brow band. :)

March 25, 2012 at 4:29 PM  
Blogger Stargazer 2 said...

I have read what you did, writing about your dream or drawing a picture about your dream, or a picture of your dream placed where you can see it is the first step in achieving your dream. I know you will continue to do this so we
can look forward to reading about a lot of very neat things on CAF.
Thanks for the very interesting post.

March 25, 2012 at 4:57 PM  
Blogger Stargazer 2 said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

March 25, 2012 at 4:58 PM  
Blogger ladyfarrier said...

While the browband is lovely, I'm a bit concerned about your "discount saddlery". When it comes to tack, in particular saddles, you usually get what you pay for. And an ill-fitting saddle is a misery for both horse and rider.

If you notice behavioral "issues" cropping up, or a lack of wanting to work or go forward, look to your saddle and it's fit.

Unfortunately, most things horse related are not inexpensive. But good quality, good fitting tack is priceless.

March 25, 2012 at 6:12 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

I'll catch up!

March 25, 2012 at 6:13 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

My saddle is a nice dressage saddle on
Loan !

March 25, 2012 at 6:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

John O'Donahue, an Irish poet and philosopher has a wonderful book titled Anam Chara that you might enjoy.

March 25, 2012 at 8:23 PM  
Blogger Bovey Belle said...

What a beautiful and original browband. I have always loved the Celtic interlace pattern.

It does look a nice saddle you are borrowing, but as ladyfarrier said, a poorly fitting saddle (even if it cost thousands to buy) can cause pinching, muscle wastage, and pain. It has to be professionally fitted - the fitter will take a template of your horse's back for the correct profile. Oh and there are saddle fitters (good ones) and "saddle fitters" (waste of rations) so go by recommendation. I speak through bitter experience. I presume it is the same for Western saddles as they also have trees (though I never gave that much thought until this minute!)

I had never heard of Anam Chara before - but I think my husband is truly my soul partner though at times that has been a difficult concept to get to grips with as he dampens by Aries tendency to jump in where Angels fear to tread : )

March 26, 2012 at 3:25 AM  
Blogger Flartus said...

Like! ;)

March 26, 2012 at 8:48 AM  
Blogger Lara said...

Never ridden anything but western! Anything English is totally new to me. You and Merlin Make it look very classy...something I wouldn't mind trying at least once. Absolutely love the brow band-Merlin has to look fabulous in it, even if its under all those bangs!

March 26, 2012 at 9:49 AM  
Blogger Christee said...

Wow, some things just go together like cog and rail just as you and Merlin. Enjoy your journey.

March 26, 2012 at 10:58 AM  
Blogger DarcC said...

That is gorgeous!

I know what you mean by soul partners. I have six dogs, and I love them all, and they are devoted to me, but there is one I call my heart dog. To say nothing of my blind mare. It's just that way. I call it the mind meld.

March 26, 2012 at 3:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


March 26, 2012 at 8:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


March 26, 2012 at 8:47 PM  

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