Rockaway Farms, East Islip -1908.

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Kenneth2816
Posts: 1178
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

Rockaway Farms, East Islip -1908.

#1 Post by Kenneth2816 » 08 Sep 2019, 19:18

They arrived foundered last October
after my partner creased Few Lyda
with a buggy whip and threatened
to hang him if he ever came near
the horses again. Three days, I was

scared the Sheriff would come, but
Anse just laughed, said ain't no need
to worry, I whooped him good.
They're a matched pair of sorells
and Lyda rode them with a spade bit
and a broom handle until he cut
their mouths up so bad, they'll never
take a bridle again.

They were just about the most handsome
things you ever saw. Flaxen mane, good
confirmation, come in at about 16 hand.
Course they were shy, as any beat-back is,
but I coaxed them with oats and apples,
rigged a sling truss in the barn to work
their fetlocks, used poultices and liniment
and had them pretty much gentled out
by spring. They'll make driving horses
by next year, sure.

Anse came home of a night from
the foundry, and this one time,
he was shaking and crying and
carrying on so it took me ten minutes
to get at what the matter was. He run
up on Few Lyda on Batson Road with
two Jamaican field hands
cursing and swinging at his animals
something fierce, and them jerking,
tossing their heads under load,raring
up wild-eyed and in pain and Ansel
leaped up on the buckboard meaning
to throttle the bastard but Lyda struck
him across the forehead with a pair
of brass knuckle dusters til the pour
of blood blinded him and he jumped.
He always said something just let go
in him over them horses, he didn't know what.

Anse told me he swore an oath right
there to kill him, but I let it pass
cause I know how he is when he gets
to drinking. Next day was Sunday and
Anse was saddling up Merriwether.

"I mean to take those horses in town
today. I'm gonna catch old man Lyda
at church, front of God and everybody"
When I saw his Daddy's Winchester in
the saddle holster, I knew he meant it.

I was told later he caught Few Lyda
coming out the side door with his
sixteen year old housekeeper, knocked
him square between the eyes and old
Lyda tried to crawl away, but Anse
would kick him, thrash him cross
the back. Preacher thought better
of trying to stop it and Lyda told
him take the Goddamn horses and all
go to hell. That's how we come by
the boys. I'm not ashamed to say
I loved Ansel McCready much as
any woman I ever met.

He caught his death in The Spanish Flu
epidemic of 1919. When they carted
him off, he swore me to not come
visit him. He was buried in an unmarked
trench at Oyster Bay along with all the
immigrants off Ellis Island.

Me and the boys hung on during the
Depression. We leased out to a milk
company, me as driver of the wagon
for nine dollars a week and a bucket
Of coal every Tuesday.
We're all greyed out now.

* I've never written anything like this. My apologies for the length .

BobBradshaw
Posts: 1385
Joined: 03 Jun 2016, 21:03

Re: Rockaway Farms, East Islip -1908.

#2 Post by BobBradshaw » 09 Sep 2019, 09:48

Well, I really like what you're doing...stretching your skill set, trying new voices. You nail the voice, the local dialect. The details pulled me in, too....love the writing as seen here:

I coaxed them with oats and apples,
rigged a sling truss in the barn to work
their fetlocks, used poultices and liniment
and had them pretty much gentled out
by spring. They'll make driving horses
by next year, sure.

Kenneth2816
Posts: 1178
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

Re: Rockaway Farms, East Islip -1908.

#3 Post by Kenneth2816 » 09 Sep 2019, 14:50

Thank you very much Bob. I need to remember a workshop isn't a publication venue, and that it's OK
to bounce the skeletons of imperfect poems off ones peers. I appreciate more than you can know the
honest feedback from you and others

capricorn
Posts: 300
Joined: 21 Sep 2017, 23:23

Re: Rockaway Farms, East Islip -1908.

#4 Post by capricorn » 12 Sep 2019, 02:58

Excellent read, Ken. I like the enjambment between St!&2, although I'm not sure about ending the last line of St1 with 'was'. Perhaps

to hang him if he ever came near
the horses again. Three days, I was scared

the Sheriff would come, but
Anse just laughed, said ain't no need

Just a thought
Eira

Kenneth2816
Posts: 1178
Joined: 01 Jun 2008, 09:17

Re: Rockaway Farms, East Islip -1908.

#5 Post by Kenneth2816 » 12 Sep 2019, 03:21

Thanks Eira

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