And we travelled under that magnificent azure sky…

Wild stallion Lazarus and part of his band in ...

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…none of us said a word. Father took the point and we put or horses to the wind and rode on. The sky lightened to a shade of translucent gauze and black specks floated on the aircurrents like tiny fragments of ash. The fresh breeze carried the smells of aspen and prairie grass, and we let the horses rest often to crop tufts of it. By early afternoon we reached the place where the open country was interrupted by cords of cold water running between gentle mudbanks. The banks were crowded with stands of slender larch and aspen and magpies and bluejays bickered from overhanging branches while the wind moved the blossoming leaves in a gentle whisper. We let the horses drink their fill before moving on, and as the day wound into evening we again found ourselves in rolling mesas covered with sagebrush.

We made our camp as the sun set behind a line of distant mountains, bleeding its long shadows across the land in bands of wavering red. We turned the horses out to graze and put our backs to a coulee wall, building our cookfire in a dried creekbed and throwing chunks of sageroot into the flames to create an aromatic perfume. Father had felled a hare earlier with one of his lura’s, and this was impaled on a long pointed stick and cooked in the smoke. Over our heads, the stars came out and boiled in the firmament like a river of broken glass. During the small hours of the night a pack of coyotes set about yodeling to one another from the nearby hills and the horses all gathered close, muttering softly and folding their ears back….

Notes from my current writing project The Book of Ten

Thanks for tuning in–more to follow….

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  1. The Episodes of Ten « Jason Barron's Blog - March 23, 2011

    […] two novels currently under way, the one which is receiving the greatest degree of my attention is The Book of Ten (the link takes you to an excerpt from the story). In pure “construction” terms, this […]

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