Solomon’s Stables

    Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USACARD #: 2004667853


    Caressing mare’s ribs, the master
    coaxes the foal into odd environs
    as sibling colts munch fresh hay,
    sifting after redolent straw,
    and fillies preen before
    copper pails expertly hammered.

    Overfond children elbow beyond
    barred stalls and whirring hornets
    to glimpse new-fangled life,
    the regal brood’s latest addition
    poised for elegant breeding
    and quartered in the Temple’s shade.

    Attendants tweak readied stallions
    by saddle cantles, tautening
    or slackening, while the king’s
    freckled studhorse guzzles swill
    to fuel the morn’s routine tantivy
    along Judah’s wooded heights.

    Cresting eastern hills, patient
    shepherds flocked by wethers and tegs
    wonder at the skittish fervor
    rousing the mild-mannered
    customarily averse to unseemly
    public displays of exhilaration.

    By Brandon Marlon