The Favourite

I think she knows she is trim and neat,
From her slender head to her slender feet.
I think she knows of her silken coat,
Of her arching neck, of her dainty throat.
For she holds her head with a regal pride
Of contrariness that she cannot hide.

I almost think that she strains to reach
The God-like gift of our human speech.
I think she knows she is nobler far
Than half the mammon about her are.
Yet this splendid, royal-blooded thing
Is slave to the track and betting ring.

'Tis little she needs of whirling lash,
Of stinging spur in the headlong dash;
Her gleaming eye, her sensitive ear,
Her flanks athrob with every cheer,
Are far too fine for the urging heel,
For this beautiful, speechless beast can feel.

I think that she sees beyond our ken,
Beyond the minds of women and men.
I think she sneers at our hollow show,
At our littleness; but this I know,
That she understands the breathless pause,
The ringing cheers and the wild applause,
The sweet renown of a glory won,
Of a triumph gained, of a race well run.
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