Horsey Christmas Story (Gift Of The Old One)...KLEENEX WARNING

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by BarbK, Dec 12, 2009.

  1. BarbK

    BarbK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 6, 2007
    Indiana
    I saw this on an old forum a couple of years ago and thought some here would like it.
    Edited to add I found the Author Info.


    GIFT OF THE OLD ONE
    By Eunice Day, Washington ME


    A brother and sister had made their usual hurried, obligatory pre-Christmas visit to
    the little farm where dwelt their elderly parents with their small herd of horses.
    The farm was where they had grown up and had been named Lone Pine Farm because of
    the huge pine, which topped the hill behind the farm. Through the years the tree had
    become a talisman to the old man and his wife, and a landmark in the countryside.
    The young siblings had fond memories of their childhood here but the city hustle and
    bustle added more excitement to their lives, and called them away to a different
    life.

    The old folks no longer showed their horses, for the years had taken their toll, and
    getting out to the barn on those frosty mornings was getting harder but it gave them
    a reason to get up in the mornings and a reason to live. They sold a few foals each
    year, and the horses were their reason for joy in the morning and contentment at
    day's end.

    Angry, as they prepared to leave, the young couple confronted the old folks. "Why do
    you not at least dispose of 'The Old One." She is no longer of use to you. It's
    been years since you've had foals from her. You should cut corners and save so you
    can have more for yourselves. How can this old worn out horse bring you anything
    but expense and work? Why do you keep her anyway?"

    The old man looked down at his worn boots,
    holes in the toes, scuffed at the barn floor and replied, " Yes I could use a pair
    of new boots. His arm slid defensively about the Old One's neck as he drew her near
    with gentle caressing he rubbed her softly behind her ears. He replied softly, "We
    keep her because of love. Nothing else, just love."

    Baffled and irritated, the young folks wished the old man and his wife a Merry
    Christmas and headed back toward the city as darkness stole through the valley. The
    old couple shook their heads in sorrow that it had not been a happy visit. A tear
    fell upon their cheeks. How is it that these young folks do not understand the
    peace of the love that filled their hearts?

    So it was, that because of the unhappy leave-taking, no one noticed the insulation
    smoldering on the frayed
    wires in the old barn. None saw the first spark fall. None but the "Old One".

    In a matter of minutes, the whole barn was ablaze and the hungry flames were licking
    at the loft full of hay. With a cry of horror and despair, the old man shouted to
    his wife to call for help as he raced to the barn to save their beloved horses. But
    the flames were roaring now, and the blazing heat drove him back. He sank sobbing to
    the ground, helpless before the fire's fury. His wife back from calling for help
    cradled him in her arms, clinging to each other, they wept at their loss.

    By the time the fire department arrived, only smoking, glowing ruins were left, and
    the old man and his wife exhausted from their grief huddled together before the
    barn. They were speechless as they rose from
    the cold snow covered ground. They nodded thanks to the firemen as there was
    nothing anyone could do now. The old man turned to his wife, resting her white
    head upon his shoulders as his shaking old hands clumsily dried her tears with a
    frayed red bandana. Brokenly he whispered, "We have lost much, but God has spared
    our home on this eve of Christmas. Let us gather strength and climb the hill to the
    old pine where we have sought comfort in times of despair. We will look down upon
    our home and give thanks to God that it has been spared and pray for our beloved
    most precious gifts that have been taken from us.

    And so, he took her by the hand and slowly helped her up the snowy hill as he
    brushed aside his own tears with the back of his old and withered hand. The journey
    up the hill was hard for their old bodies in
    the steep snow. As they stepped over the little knoll at the crest of the hill,
    they paused to rest, looking up to the top of the hill the old couple gasped and
    fell to their knees in amazement at the incredible beauty before them. Seemingly,
    every glorious, brilliant star in the heavens was caught up in the glittering,
    snow-frosted branches of their beloved pine, and it was aglow with heavenly candles.
    And poised on its top most bough, a crystal crescent moon glistened like spun glass.
    Never had a mere mortal created a Christmas tree such as this. They were breathless
    as the old man held his wife tighter in his arms.

    Suddenly, the old man gave a cry of wonder and incredible joy. Amazed and mystified,
    he took his wife by the hand and pulled her forward. There, beneath the tree, in
    resplendent glory, a mist hovering over and
    glowing in the darkness was their Christmas gift. Shadows glistening in the night
    light.

    Bedded down about the "Old One" close to the trunk of the tree, was the entire herd,
    safe.

    At the first hint of smoke, she had pushed the door ajar with her muzzle and had led
    the horses through it. Slowly and with great dignity, never looking back, she had
    led them up the hill, stepping cautiously through the snow. The foals were
    frightened and dashed about. The skittish yearlings looked back at the crackling,
    hungry flames, and tucked their tails under them as they licked their lips and
    hopped like rabbits. The mares that were in foal with a new years crop of babies,
    pressed uneasily against the "Old One" as she moved calmly up the hill and to safety
    beneath the pine. And now, she lay
    among them and gazed at the faces of the old man and his wife. Those she loved she
    had not disappointed. Her body was brittle with years, tired from the climb, but the
    golden eyes were filled with devotion as she offered her gift---

    Because of love. Only Because of love.

    Tears flowed as the old couple shouted their praise and joy, And again the peace of
    love filled their hearts.

    MERRY CHRISTMAS!
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2009
  2. Overeasyplz

    Overeasyplz Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 8, 2009
    Leesburg
    At least you warned me!! WHAAAA THAT WAS BEAUTIFUL!! sniff sniff
     
  3. Bantamlover23

    Bantamlover23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 6, 2008
    Chuluota, FL
    OK I am bauling. [​IMG] That is a wonderful story.
     
  4. PandoraTaylor

    PandoraTaylor RT Poultry n Things

    Jun 29, 2009
    Alaska
    [​IMG]
    Thank you for the beautiful story.

    [​IMG]
    For all the love ones lost,
    [​IMG]
    for all the love ones found,
    [​IMG]
    for all of those when we meet again.
     
  5. HorseFeathers

    HorseFeathers Frazzled

    Apr 2, 2008
    Southern Maine
    OK, I actually had tears in my eyes. What a sweet story!
     
  6. ChicknJ

    ChicknJ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 7, 2008
    Central Florida
    ummm, thank you. I have been out with the vet 2 times, once this morning and she just left after the 2nd visit for the day. She was here for our "old one" we love her so much, I needed to read that
     
  7. BarbK

    BarbK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 6, 2007
    Indiana
    Quote:[​IMG] Hope your "old one" is doing better.
     
  8. Lifesong Farm

    Lifesong Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 14, 2010
    Noble County
    Well its that time of year again so I thought I would pull up an old post for those who haven't seen it.
     
  9. 2pinkmom

    2pinkmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 31, 2010
    Aw, man. I'm actually crying! I just lost an "old one" this fall - my beautiful TB gelding. Apparently I'm not deterred, because a new "old one" is arriving on Saturday, an older Percheron gelding needing a warmer climate and an easier life than he's had. What can I say, I have a soft spot for geriatric equines :)
     
  10. fancy

    fancy Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 13, 2010
    West Palm Beach, FL
    Thanks, I needed that!

    Fancy
     

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