I got to the barn earlier than usual the next day, a little afraid of what I might find. Troubling visions had disturbed my sleep. Had he screamed his brains out and kept the whole neighborhood awake? Had he continued to try to climb over the stall door? Had he succeeded and run wild through the property all night? Worse, had he gotten *half way* over, and hung there, half in, half out?
I brushed these unproductive visions from my mind and hurried to the barn aisle. It was early, no one was around. All was quiet; he had either given up or the barn help had shot him. As I walked toward his stall my horses whickered the usual good morning hello. I saw ten horsey heads hanging out over ten stall doors. Hmmm. 10? But I now had 11 horses. No new chestnut head hanging over the door. Ruh-roh.
I stopped outside his door, peeked around quietly, and whew! There he was, standing, head low and in the corner. Relief!! Upright and apparently in one piece! I watched him for a moment. He had a hind leg cocked, relaxed, breathing slowly and quietly. He had survived!