The Ch-ing Emperor’s troupe of buried horses

The visor-blinded horses of the jousts

The pompadoured bronze horses of the Renaissance

The Elgin horses roped and dragged from Athens

The Generalissimo’s mount in Freedom Square

The noble cheval burst by English archers

The cannon deaf cavalry of Bull Run

The Imam’s arabians writhing on the the cross of Allah

The dive-bombed horse with tongue of broken glass

Seigfried’s horror horse with Panzer lancer

Horses were never interested in war

War no longer interested in horses

The investment stallions seeding twitched mares

The ground horse catfood of the dispossessed

The cast horses in the mafia stables

The shiver brained coursers wearing buttercups

The cossack horses higher than whole villages

The porcelain dancers of the Lippizaner

The Indian ponies trained to die like savages

The slipping horsefeet of Alexander Nevsky

The heart-horned horses of the picadores

The cigarette horses branded sex and death

The pinup stallions of gold college girls

The cowboy’s true horse on the lonely range

The dawn is the head of a sacrificed horse

From “The Grand Concourse,” (MSS, State University of New York at Binghamton, Binghamton, N.Y. 13902: $7.95, paper; 0-928621-02-5). Kessler was born in Brooklyn, grew up in the Bronx and teaches at the State University of New York.

copyright 1990, Milton Kessler. Reprinted by permission of MSS, State University of New York at Binghamton.