Mary’s Pasture

rehab, horse, mary's pasture, horses, pasture,

“In selfless service three horses give
Each day the price they pay to live
Until one day a woman came
And offered to take away their pain
In pastures green they recover awhile
While their hearts remember to smile
Until they are called to heaven on high
Where their soul remembers how to fly.”

~ Kim McElroy

Mary contacted me to have me create a portrait of an angel horse named Thunder whom she had rescued a few years before. He had spent 27 years as a 4-H lesson horse and a therapy horse but had become unhappy in his work. As he recovered in Mary’s pasture with another horse named Chaco, he taught her many valuable lessons, including the joy of just being in nature. The co-facilitators of this lesson were two special moths which you will find hidden in the painting.
As Mary waited for her turn on my portrait waiting list, my husband became ill with cancer so her portrait was delayed. In the intervening years, she rescued another mare named Maya. Maya and Chaco instantly bonded, and for the short time that Maya lived, she and Chaco created an earthly paradise together.
When Mary told me this story, I knew that all three horses had to be in the portrait, and when she showed me the photo of Maya and Chaco with the shadow on Chaco’s shoulder, I knew why. To me, the shadow is like the spirit of Thunder, present with his herd mates. Now Maya has joined him in spirit. Mary’s loving dedication has made this possible. Please support Mary’s non-profit www.SeniorHorseRehab.com

Reference Photo:
Chaco and Maya, Mary's horses


Mary’s Comments:  Words are completely inadequate to express how your painting touches me.  You captured the essence of what I want people to know about horses.  It’s why I go through the blood, sweat, and tears of rehabbing and caring for older horses:  to see them come forth in all their horseness, and to see that they really do have a life all their own.  You captured that and the little sneak peeks and glimpses we humans can get of it.

When I had absolutely nothing to say when you unveiled it, it was because seeing it took me immediately to that sacred place where horses live all the time and for us humans/myself to even begin to understand what’s there I had to slow down and stop doing things and found new ways of listening.  I began to see value in “doing nothing” which then allowed the horses more freedom to express themselves.  Thunder and the butterfly/moths was the big eye-opener to this “other world” that was all around me, and he opened the door to it.  And I love how you surprised me with the two little butterflies in the painting.
And then the relationship you captured between Chaco and Maya.  That photo was taken a week after she hit her lowest point and then did a 2-week rebound in health before she died just over a month later.  These special moments are so fleeting, but it’s another reason why I do what I do.  Even though she was sick, she was so happy to be with Chaco and free to come and go as she pleased.  And Chaco certainly didn’t mind having her at his right hand.
I felt so many things when you unveiled the painting:  peace, comfort, calm, stillness, contentment, bittersweet, amazement, gratitude.  And I’m sure there are more that I haven’t been able to put words to.  There was no way to say anything but rather basque in that amazing place the horses introduced to me, and through your artwork, others will be introduced to it as well.
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Print on Paper, Canvas, Metal. Framed/Unframed.

Promptly fulfilled by Fine Art America.

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High-quality, color-matched print by local printmaker.

Inspected, titled and signed by Kim McElroy

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