Jethro Tull – Heavy Horses
Believe it or not, though I have liked Jethro Tull for many years (and passionately loved their album Songs from the Wood, which has been one of my favorites since late high school / early college days), I just listened seriously to this one, and read the lyrics, for the first time the night before last. Wow! I did not know what I was missing:
Let me find you a filly for your proud stallion seed to keep the old line going. And we'll stand you abreast at the back of the wood behind the young trees growing To hide you from eyes that mock at your girth, and your eighteen hands at the shoulder And one day when the oil barons have all dripped dry and the nights are seen to draw colder They'll beg for your strength, your gentle power your noble grace and your bearing And you'll strain once again to the sound of the gulls in the wake of the deep plough, sharing.
Standing like tanks on the brow of the hill Up into the cold wind facing In stiff battle harness, chained to the world Against the low sun racing Bring me a wheel of oaken wood A rein of polished leather A Heavy Horse and a tumbling sky Brewing heavy weather.
Again, wow. Lifts the hair on the back of my neck! For someone who loves the great draft horses as I do, this is a deeply moving song. Magnificent!
A much younger Anglophilic Anglican, ground-driving a Percheron mare, at a draft horse driving workshop at the Carroll County Farm Museum, c. 2000-2001.