ride upon your stallion


Have you ever heard a song that stole your heart, your mind and your very soul?  I think all of us have songs that fulfill something in our lives.  Some music may make us happy or remind us of another time or even give us hope for the future.  My experience with people during the last few years has shown me how passionate one can be about music and/or lyrics.  Styles and genre is debated all the time.  I’ve learned so much from so many about music.  I don’t ever want to stop learning.

Today I heard a song that, years ago, moved me to such an extreme it changed my life and my relationship with myself.  It may not have that effect on anyone else in the world but this is something I can own and I’m marvelling at how much it still gets to me.  It’s remarkable how much it did affect me back then and how changed I am now.  It just clicked!  I feel I’ve worked harder than I thought.

It’s a song about war and a soldier who is in battle, exhausted, weak and alone.

I first heard this Tom Cochrane song back in 1995.  My sister gave me a tape she made me for my birthday and it was the last song on the 120 minute tape so it took a while to get to it.  On this day, I plunked that tape in my trusty Walkman for my daily walk in 28C heat.  I loved to walk in the heat then.

It was an amazing time for me…just bought a house with my boyfriend who had balked about committment for 4 years, my son was the light of my life and could do no wrong, I had a job I loved, some actual girlfriends, I was in great shape for the first time in ages, my parents were healthy and I had a decent relationship with most of my siblings.  I was loved.

On this walk I was finally almost at the end of the tape when the song came on.  As I listened. I could feel the heat from the sun on my face and the sweat running down my body.  Halfway though the song my legs felt weak and I sank onto the grass nearby.  I played that song over and over, crying like my heart was broken in little pieces.

Well, it was.

Shut your eyes my darling there’s nothing you can say
the man in the moon won’t fall on you
he doesn’t live there anyway
you don’t have to be a soldier to fight in your private war
let the blood you might see rain down on me
you don’t have to fight no more

I saw pictures in my head.  I saw a very little girl with bright, curly hair and old eyes.  I saw a man on a white horse reaching down for the fragile little thing and pulling her up to sit in front of him, wrapping his cape and strong arms around her.  He dried her tears and hid her fears for a time, just to show her it can be done.  He knew that all she wanted was for someone else to take the pain from her but she couldn’t let that happen because she couldn’t wish it upon anyone.

there’s nothing you can say
there’s nothing you can send
there’s nothing that can change the facts
not all the king’s men

That little girl spoke to the strong man and told him and his horse about the fear that has filled her nights in a home where she should be safe from harm and of the fear of people she loved.

He could hear her screaming.

Have you ever cried until there were no tears left? I did that day as I listened to that song again and again.  I could see that little tiny girl grow up to go to school, filled with incredible fear and loathing.  I could see what she saw; a scarred and ugly girl in school where it was kind of hard to make friends because if you looked at her funny she would cry.  She was afraid of everything.

By fourth grade there was a new abuser to take the place of the one before.  He had taken it upon himself to torture that girl and did, until high school.  Unspeakable days and nights.  The bath was her friend; so cleansing and it was the only room with a lock on the door.

ride upon your stallion
and I’ll ride upon your mare
we’ll ride so far, ride so hard
far away from here
and when we look back upon it
it all will become so clear
and the gates will open up for us
and we wont have no more fear
there’s nothing u can say
there’s nothing u can send
there’s nothing that can change the facts
not all the kings men

I know there are a lot of little girls out there just like this one.  She’s special to me though because she lives inside me and won’t go away.  Its been rather awkward sometimes, because the more I push her away the more she’s in my face.

there’s nothing you can say
there’s nothing you can send
there’s nothing that can change the facts
not all the king’s men
look away look away

you might be tired and troubled but not today
when they come down upon you
I won’t let them get anything on you
and we’ll dream away all those fears and troubles may
look away

we both were motherless children
they sent us separate ways
the family you’d seen beat down on you
mine it was okay
I’ve come to take you back now may
save you from this fate
they won’t have any more chances
to treat you this way

I’ve been in therapy for a long time because of that kid. My love/hate for her has eaten up a lot of my life.  She has made me strong though and, no matter what, I needed her.  If only she had known about me during her time. If only she had known how strong she would be.

I was brave enough a few years ago to go to the police and press charges against my abuser because I could see him grooming another girl and this girl was one I loved too.  The Crown couldn’t take it further because of the time that had elapsed but I had done it; I went on video, told that little girl’s story and dragged up details I thought were gone.  I sat through and answered every embarrassing and difficult question perfect strangers had for me, describing things in achingly painful detail.  I managed to stop him anyway.  I think he lives in fear of me now.

I found out recently my abuser lives less than a block from where I live.

Stronger.

A survivor.  I’m no longer a victim.

there’s nothing you can say
there’s nothing you can send
there’s nothing that can change all that
not all the king’s men

Now I’m listening to “All the King’s Men” by Tom Cochrane for the first time in many years.  I have been on a journey for a very long time, which most of my readers know, and I can see that horse as I listen and look into my heart. There is someone reaching down for that little tiny girl but it’s not a man at all. Not anymore.

It’s the 51-year-old …

me.

u don’t have to be a soldier
to fight in your private war
let the blood u might see rain down on me
u don’t have to fight no more

Holding you tight.  And Our heart is whole again.

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8 responses to “ride upon your stallion

  1. Dear Sista’ what a heartfelt, authentic, powerful post. Until the end you kept me reading, and loving both the little girl and the 51 year old.

    How grand you reclaimed your inner child. I too have a song like this, just recently I discovered how much emotion it evokes in me.

    Wide Awake from Katy Perry is the one.. and there is a man, on a horse, who is just about to make promises.. but she…

    Well if you haven’t see it you must, and if you did well you know the story.

    Love you my dear friend, keep on loving that little girl of yours.. She will walk beside you the rest of the way.

    xoxoxo

  2. Corinne Latta (nee Barnes)

    Marie, You, my dear, are an amazing writer and an amazing young woman. You have spoken out for so many who could not, would not ,speak for themselves. You are so strong and have come through so much, You should be so proud of yourself and your accomplishments. As you go forward Marie, hold your head high and walk tall with your shoulders back. You so deserve it.
    Unfortunately, these monsters live amongst us but you have proven one can be a survivor not a victim. God Bless You Marie and your family. A huge hug to you.
    (Sherri’s sister Corinne).

    • Thank you Corinne. I remember you from my teens as Sherri’s far away sister. She loves you and looked up to you so much even through her own hell. You taking the time to comment on my post fills me with such honour.

  3. Love reading them every time you post them. I learn so much more about you, and all the shit you have really gone through. Hugs to you hon….. john

    John Johnston

    Courage is the most important of all the virtues, because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently. You can practice any virtue erratically, but nothing consistently without courage. Maya Angelou

  4. Oh my girl, I love you so much and as John said reading your post let me learn so much more about you I didn’t already know. Your strength inspires me. Know that even tho we don’t see each other much I love you *hugs*

  5. Pingback: Looking Back, Pushing Forward | MARIE's space

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