Alys: Tyra, what do you think about reincarnation?
Tyra: Why are you asking?
A: I’m just curious.
T: Reincarnation is not a matter of belief. It just is.
A: Might you care to elaborate?
T: I don’t know how it works with other species, but we ponies and horses, we come back repeatedly as the same.
A: Why is this?
T: Because we are the noblest of creatures.
A: Right up there with angels?
T: Yes and no. Angels are not physical but rather spiritual beings. Horses and ponies we are physical and spiritual.
A: You really believe this?
Alys riding tyra in the arena
T: Like I just said, Reincarnation is not a matter of belief. It just is.
A: I had this very odd thought today. I just finished reading Reckless, which is the story of how a Mongolian mare was instrumental in the U.S. Marines winning the Korean conflict.
T: You don’t say.
A: I do say.
T: And what are your thoughts about this?
A: Well, today, when I was assisting in loading manure buckets into our friend Bill Schmidtkunz’s truck, you (who had earlier walked out of the enclosure) came over and said hello; just like Reckless would do.
T: Go on.
A: And then all the sudden it occurred to me that you might be Reckless reincarnated.
T: Any other reasons?
A: It is mainly that, like Reckless, you are so friendly and curious. But at the same time, you are small, and bright red, just like her.
T: I confess. I was in a previous life Reckless.
T: Absolutely. It’s quite the coincidence that you were reading a book about Reckless – but the similarities did alert you to the fact that I was she in a previous life.
A: You were Reckless. Were you any other horse or pony that I might know?
T: I don’t think so.
A: How does being Tyra compare to being Reckless?
T: I have been very fortunate in that in all the lives I’ve lived, I’ve been loved and able to love back. There are so many horses out there that have not been so fortunate.
A: Was it as difficult as the author made it seem, your having to haul all that ammunition up the hill, repeatedly, and then carry wounded Marines down the ill, repeatedly?
T: Yes. You cannot imagine how difficult it was. There was noise. There was shrapnel. There was smoke. And bodies everywhere.
A: But no horse carcasses.
T: Thankfully, no. But because I was the only horse out there, I was a target.
A: And you were hit twice. You got a cut over one eye and another on the flank.
T: Yes. But at the time, I didn’t think about it. Rather, I kept going.
A: Why did you keep going?
T: Because I knew that I was a part of a team, and that if I gave up, I’d let them down.
A: Do you feel as though you are a part of a team here?
T: Not as much so. Not yet at least. I have not yet been asked to do anything requiring team work.
A: Well, this trip this summer may change your self-perceptions.
T: Yes, it might. I am looking forward to this trip because I do like adventure.
A: Coming up here in the trailer was an adventure.
T: Yes, and going back down to the Lower 48 and trekking, this will be an adventure.
A: Minus the bombs and shrapnel.
T: Yes, thankfully, minus the bombs and shrapnel.
Next: 84. 3/26/19: Intimations of Spring