The Kiplings and India: A Collection of Writings from British India, 1870-1900

Sonnet (On Being Rejected of One's Horse) (Rudyard Kipling)

Give me my rein, my syce! Give me my rein!
      I have a need of it, an absolute need,
To climb upon the bounding back again
     And curb the bad, mad gambols of my steed. 
'Tis strange we are thus parted—by no lust
     Of mine, but rather blind, unwearied force
     That worked upon the sinews of my horse,
And drove me from him, howling in the dust.  

Now he is neither gentle, kind nor quiet,
       And he strives (though vainly) to outleap his girth, 
   While right and left the armed hooves are hurled.
       Oh Destrier!  bethink thee that this riot
       Shall, in the end, bring neither rest nor mirth....
Only the heaviest bit in all the world.  

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