Before Striking the Ground | The Catholic Gardener

Before Striking the Ground | The Catholic Gardener


Horses fascinate me.  From the stout and powerful march of the Percheron to the rhythmic gate of the Paso Fino. Watching them trot and gallop freely in pasture is a simple beauty from God.

While driving country lanes, I came upon a boarding farm and pulled over to watch the horses running and tossing their heads, and noticed something never realized before.

In dressage it’s called passage: a slow, cadenced trot executed with great elevation of the feet and characterized by a moment of suspension before the feet strike the ground.

That motion, the moment before the hoof strikes the ground, a brief second of suspension in the continuation of a walk. That is how I pray at times, an elevated lightness mid-step, somewhere between silence and closeness.

Somewhere we know that without silence words lose their meaning,  that without listening speaking no longer heals, that without distance closeness cannot cure.

Henri J. M. Nouwen


May God’s peace lighten us this day.

Image by Irhaij at



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