Monday, July 26, 2010

Shanks' Pony

This pony lives in Wicklow and has already won a few prizes. I caught it at home in a relaxed hay-eating moment - although it obstinately refused to come nearer for a close-up. Because of my name, I am always on the receiving end of the joke "Did you get here by Shanks' pony?" I have given up on that one but I thought I would claim my name and pony together! One of the most loyal companions of humans, the horse has a special place in symbolism - mostly, but not exclusively for good. It can be a creature of the light and of fertility, or it can be of darkness and devilish power. Given the right path, and where rider and horse are intertwined as one, the horse is a true being of the intuition and its rider of reason. These are complementary of course and in analysis could represent an ideal state of integration. Set on a different path however, the horse can see all the ghosts and spirits by the wayside that are hidden to its rider. It is believed that the horse may then make a pact with the darker forces, taking its rider along the way. Psychoanalytically, the individual is at the mercy of the unconscious and of the shadow. But this rather beautiful pony in the picture seem unlikely to head off in that direction!