Vale Faerie, Daughter of Avalon

The wind was violent, gusting, spooking horses, making them edgy. Making me edgy. Pulling down branches, even trees.

I sent my senses out to the animals. All was well, they said. But something wasn’t. I was home alone, and not feeling comfortable. I tried to tell myself it was just the wind. Just a solar flare.

The electricity went down. I worked for as long as I had battery, and gave it up. Why did no electricity bother me today, when once I lived for years without it? I couldn’t put my finger on it. Something was off . But then we live in a time when “off” has become normal, and even when we listen with our hearts and souls, the world is new now. We are even more sensitive. It could be anything.

I went outside to begin the evening rounds of bedding down and feeding the 300 animals in our care. I wanted to get over to the thoroughbred herd. Had the wind ripped the roof off the old shearing shed?

Shock ripped through my heart. A body lying so still. I knew she was gone long before I checked her . The herd met me at the gate, unsettled. I pushed through them, running over to the rangy chestnut lying on the hill. Still warm, she had been dancing in the wind. Her heart stopped. Her Spirit, still present, was surprised. Her Spirit lingered.

As I sat there with tears streaming down my face, the cows came over forming a solid circle around us. They looked at me with compassion , and sniffed Faerie’s still body. The brumbies in the next paddock, also sent their compassion to me and a sad salute to a friend, now gone. Sweet Faerie. Never a day of illness. Seventeen years of pure freedom. Nothing but loving tending – ever.

A daughter of Avalon, she was born on this sacred land. We inherited her and her half-sister Gypsy when we bought the place. Yearlings then, we loved their gentle natures and ways. Never bridled. Never ridden. We taught them the halter and lead rope and they handled everything with love in their stride. They knew freedom from the racetrack and relentless breeding. They had a herd, food, freedom, large paddocks and love.

I noticed her hooves. Neatly tended by the farrier. So tidy. I tracked again. No sign of anything, but the dance – hooning in the wind.

I stood up, helping her leave in the way of the Andean shaman, reluctant to leave her body, so lonely in the paddock. But her herd didn’t want to stay. I put them in the next paddock. And left all the gates open so they could come and say goodbye in they needed.

Sweet Faerie. You never ever gave me a moment’s trouble. There is a Buddhist saying, “It takes a big wind, to carry off a great soul.”

That was you. You leave a hole in the herd, and in our hearts. I’m glad your passing was sudden and pain free. I know you will wander off when you want to. You are, as always, free.

Faerie 2006