Little Tierno

So break was absolutely wonderful, even though I’m currently drowning in stress after returning to school today. But Oklahoma was so rejuvenating, and I don’t think I’ve ever fallen in love with a place so much like I fell in love with Tahlequah last week. The senioritis is so much worse now, but the good part is I have more motivation for writing than I’ve ever had (one more step to overcoming procrastination).

Tahlequah was lovely, and the fact that soon I will get to see my horse every weekend instead of every four months is a little incomprehendable to me right now, hence the bursts of excited energy and making up words like incomprehendable. I’ve got this long distance relationship thing down, y’all. But I have really cute stories about my horses’ character nyms, I guess you could call it, since y’all don’t hear enough about them as is. (But also because I didn’t tell the Tierno story very well in rhetoric today.)

All the horses are Paso Finos, so, naturally, most of them have Spanish-esque names. ‘Caballero’ translates into gentleman or knight, which is actually quite sweet because he is so gentle and he is my knight in shining armor. He has these soft mocha brown eyes that I swear see into your soul.


But my favorite one to tell is Tierno’s. He is Caballero’s half-brother, an adorable little blood bay. He’s four years old now, but he’s the baby of the bunch, and he knows it. ‘Tierno’ is Spanish for ‘tender,’ and he’s the sweetest little darling you’ll ever meet. But for about eight months of his life his name was ‘salvaje,’ which translates to ‘wild.’ And boy was that name duly earned. When he was born, he took it upon himself to best the electric fence. Don’t worry, he’s fine, horses are tough as nails. But at dawn, my uncle went out to the field, and there’s Tierno’s mama, no longer pregnant. But there’s no baby. My uncle scours the field, and he’s no where to be found. Until he finds a broken wire at the bottom of the electric fence. Little Tierno, no more than three hours old, snapped the wire of a running electric fence, and, instead of taking off for heaven knows where, settled down under a tree a few yards away, by himself, without his mama. Unheard of for a foal. My uncle finds him, and this foal is just a spindly little thing, so my uncle figures he’ll just carry him back to the field. He’s hours old and placid as can be, simple.

It was not simple. Tierno thrashed and kicked and squirmed; you’d think my uncle was trying to drown him. Needless to say, it was not a thirty second trip back to the field. And ever after that, Tierno was crazy. He’d tear around the field ceaselessly for no reason, stabling him was a nightmare, and his energy was combustible and unlimited. You’d think he’d been born a wild mustang. Halter training took months, as opposed to days for Caballero. The only time he slowed was to soak up attention and pets from those weird two-legged creatures with the delicious orange crunchy things. Even then, he was like a loose canon. I think he was the epitome of a hot mess. Then, at around eight months old, he wouldn’t eat for a day, and the next morning, he was mellow and chill as can be. Ever since, he has been calm and eager and, outside of a little spoiled entitlement, sweet as syrup. So he got himself the permanent name Tierno. I always thought it sounded a little bit like Tornado though, which still adequately describes him since he still gets into shenanigans now and again. He’s the only horse who’s had the gall to nip me, other than the stallion.

To this day, we don’t know if he was just naturally crazy and calmed when he got his wild streak out, or if the run-in with the electricity of the fence rewired his brain for a few months. Maybe he was inspired by Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron, I don’t know. But he is the cutest little thing and I just love him.

Consequently, he doesn’t hold still for pictures.

5 thoughts on “Little Tierno

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  1. Best line hands down: “The only time he slowed was to soak up attention and pets from those weird two-legged creatures with the delicious orange crunchy things.” Your break sounds like it was amazing! Also, the horses look so comfortable around you that’s so cool!


  2. This is so cute! I thought it was so funny when you said you have long distance relationships down. I’m so happy you had a good break and I’m so excited for you to see your horses every weekend!


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