Essays of an Equestrian

Soon the great American summer holiday known as the 4th of July will be with us. This holiday, also named Independence Day, marks the day in history when the colonial representatives of the original 13 colonies signed the great document The Declaration of Independence pronouncing American independence from Britain and tyranny.

This holiday remains one of my favorites of the year, second only to Christmas. In addition to the wonderful Independence Day ceremonies, fireworks, national pride and the flying of flags, other traditions have evolved such as the great American art named “The Barbeque”.

So, in honor of this holiday I bring you this Revolutionary War tune tweeked in a DressageForTheRestOfUs kind of way. I would add that in the days of yesteryear, the term Yankee Doodle was meant as an unkind term often meaning “fool” and it’s in that context that I use it. It is not meant to refer to Americans, but rather to the folks I perceive to be riding “fools” riding in forced, held, manipulated, unnatural, unhealthy frames.

It’s meant to be sung to the familiar tune of “Yankee Doodle Dandy”

Yankee doodle rode dressage
On a giant pony
Shoved two bits in its mouth
And made its carriage phony

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

The show I saw was FEI
The riding very vexing
Horses staring at the ground
They called it hyperflexing

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

I watched a team from overseas
They did a lot of winning
They rode with force and shortened necks
They did not see their sinning

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

So I asked the judge why high they scored
Short necks and phony frames
He look surprised in his eyes
And said it was their fame

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

Then I heard a woman say
I’m just a stupid ammie
An amateur is too unsure
She really tried to slam me

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

I turned to her and I did say
Just see the horse’s eyes
Every time you ride that way
His soul just mourns and dies

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

Next to me there was this man
Who seemed quite in the know
He said I’m right with my eyesight
A Master known as Nu-no

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

The friend with him was very grim
He muttered like a whiner
What he saw just dropped his jaw
This Kleimke they called Reiner

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

And with them was another man
A Master worth his mettle
Exercises he did train
His name is Walter Zettl

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

Then rode by a Ma-no-lo
Upon an Andulusian
Light and lofty he rode well
Classic’s not illusion

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

Masters smiled as they did watch
A rider worth his salt
His horse went well they all could tell
And his horse could halt

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

I wish I could go back and time
See Masters in a ride-off
All the ones who taught so well
And the man von Neindorff

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

Now its time to train my horse
I have to find a trainer
Wanted one who did things right
Its really a no brainer

Yankee doodle did it rough
Yankee not so dandy
Mind the music and the kur
Don’t ride so very “hand-ee”

If I could wish a riders wish
I’d have them all to teach me
Happy horse result of course
Me so glad I’d peepee

Yankee doodle not so rough
Yankee not forced framed
Ride it right it’s out of sight
Plus the horse ain’t lamed

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The good will of the horse is like the scent of a rose. Once it is gone, it is gone forever.