When I Am An Old Horse Woman

There are several versions of this poem floating around the internet. This is the one I saw first, and this is the one the Sings to my Soul.
Over the weekend, I bought myself a deliciously tacky pink straw hat, and this poem was the very first thing that came to mind. The next was getting the Girls to wear my new hat. 🙂


When I am an old horsewoman
I shall wear turquoise and diamonds,
And a straw hat that doesn’t suit me
And I shall spend my social security on
white wine and carrots,
And sit in my alleyway of my barn
And listen to my horses breathe.

I will sneak out in the middle of a summer night
And ride the old bay gelding,
Across the moonstruck meadow
If my old bones will allow
And when people come to call, I will smile and nod
As I walk past the gardens to the barn
and show instead the flowers growing
inside stalls fresh-lined with straw.

I will shovel and sweat and wear hay in my hair
as if it were a jewel
And I will be an embarrassment to all
Who will not yet have found the peace in being free
to have a horse as a best friend
A friend who waits at midnight hour
With muzzle and nicker and patient eyes
For the kind of woman I will be
When I am old.

-By Patty Barnhart
Originally published in The Arabian Horse World magazine in 1992

"Do you mind? We're having a private conversation here!"

“Do you mind? We’re having a private conversation here!”

"And then, when she thought I was snuggling, I spit water down her back!!"

“And then, when she thought I was snuggling, I spit water down her back!!”

"It's a pleasure to meet you! :) "

“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Madam! 🙂 “

"Isn't my new hat lovely?"

“Isn’t my new hat lovely?”