Haunted by Horses in St Petersburg

Last weekend I travelled to St Petersburg to start research on a new book and I thought I’d share my equestrian shots. I was only in this fascinating, complicated city for two and a half days and did not venture out of the very heart of it but I still found some horse history of […]

Talking Horses: “The Cavalier’s brave warlike horse bids them kiss his arse”

Here’s a gem. This salty poem appeared on a pamphlet during the English Civil War, and it pitches the Royalist Cavaliers against the Cromwellian Roundheads through the medium of a fancy, boastful war horse and a humble mill horse or ass. Some tart words are exchanged between these two, reflecting on the ideologies of opposing […]

Talking Horses: Honhy, Honhy, Hon! A Victorian Policeman is Saluted.

  In his 29-year career as a policeman in Victorian London, John Pegg oversaw over 1,300 convictions for cruelty to horses. This poem was written “on behalf” of those horses by George H Hutt in 1892. Read more about Hutt – “the police poet” – and Pegg here, along with a collection of other “horses’ […]

Talking Horses: Ponies Plot

Talking Horses is a series of extracts from novels, poems and short stories both classic and obscure that feature fictional horses who enter into the conversation. Ponies Plot is a 1965 curio by the British naval historian C. Northcote Parkinson. Curious because it sends up the classic pony book delightfully. It tells the story of […]

Talking Horses: My Name is Red

Talking Horses is a series of extracts from novels, poems and short stories both classic and obscure that feature fictional horses who enter into the conversation.     My Name is Red (1998) by Orhan Pamuk, translated by Erdağ M. Göknar: Ignore the fact that I’m standing here placid and still; if truth be told, […]

Talking Horses: Strider

Talking Horses is a series of extracts from novels, poems and short stories both classic and obscure that feature fictional horses who enter into the conversation. Strider: The Story of a Horse, (1886) by Leo Tolstoy. Also known as “Kholstomer”: Old age is sometimes majestic, sometimes ugly, and sometimes pathetic. But old age can be […]

Talking Horses: Dick the Little Poney

Talking Horses is a series of extracts from novels, poems and short stories both classic and obscure that feature fictional horses who enter into the conversation.     The Memoirs of Dick, the little poney, supposed to be written by himself (1799) by Anon. Why I was called Dick, I know not. The appellation was […]