In the days to follow the hacendado would come up to the corral where they’d shaped the manada and he and John Grady would walk among the mares and John Grady would argue their points and the hacendado would muse and walk away a fixed distance and stand looking back and nod and muse again and walk off with his eyes to the ground to a fresh vantage point and then look up to see the mare anew, willing to see a new mare should one present itself. Where he could find no gifts of either stance or conformation to warrant his young breeder’s confidence John Grady would likely defer to his judgment. Yet every mare could be pled for on the basis of what they came to call la unica cosa and that one thing which could absolve them of any but the grossest defect was an interest in cattle. For he’d broken the more promising mares to ride and he’d take them upcountry through the cienaga pasture where the cows and calves stood in the lush grass along the edge of the marshlands and he would show them the cows and let them move among them. And in the manada were mares who took a great interest in what they saw and some would look back at the cows as they were ridden from the pasture. He claimed that cowsense could be bred for. The hacendado was less sure. But there were two things they agreed upon wholly and that were never spoken and that was that God had put horses on earth to work cattle and that other than cattle there was no wealth proper to a man.
Random Passages is a random collection of memorable writing.
- Were you in love with her?
- During the first part of your life, you only become of happiness once you have lost it
- Your only chance of survival, if you are sincerely smitten, lies in hiding this fact from the woman you love
- They look so fine, and young, and wrapped up in each other.
- Christ, he thinks, by my age I ought to know
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