Summer 1995 • Vol. XVII No. 3/4 PoetryJuly 1, 1995 |

Why Young Girls like to Ride Bareback

You grasp a clump of mane in your left hand, spring up and fall across her back; then, pulling on the wiry black hair which cuts into your palm and fourth finger, haul yourself up till your right leg swings across the plump cheek of her hindquarters. Now you hold her, warm and alive, between your thighs. In summer, wearing shorts, you feel the dander of her coat, glossy and dusty at the same time, greasing up the insides of your calves, and as she walks, each of your knees in turn feels the muscle bulge out behind her shoulder blade. Trotting's a matter of balance: you bounce around, unable to enter her motion as you will when the trot breaks and she finally waltzes from two to three time. Nothing to be done at the trot but grab again that mane that feels, though you don't yet know it, like pubic hair, and straddle her jolting spine with your seat bones knowing that when the canter comes, you will suddenly merge: you and that great, that powerful friend—she, bunching

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