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At about one o’clock in the afternoon of Thursday, 13 June 2019 yet another horse dies in the world. Gaunt and lean, his massive frame, which has earned him his name, fills the space before his small, slim handler. Their eyes locked on each other, the gentle giant responds as readily to her calm energy as his once powerful legs shakily allow. The needle goes in and he shakes his head. Gently the wisp of a woman urges him on while stroking his face. He stands for her as upright and erect as an old gelding can. Time stands still or so it seems and then, as if in slow motion, his dilapidated body topples and slides to the ground. Within moments he is pronounced dead. And then a miracle happens.

No one remembers precisely when the reports started or where they first emanated from. The started as a trickle and soon morphed into a river. Where could they have originated?

“What about Europe? Isn’t that where his humans originally come from?” someone asks at the Global Horse Organisation for Sports and Therapies.

Another ventures Australia, because that is where the horse died.

“But he isn’t dead,” another interjects. “This is what the reports are all about, isn’t it?”

Bloody newcomer. You can almost hear everyone think it. What hole did he crawl out of?

“No, mate,” the office manager takes the time to explain, “it’s not that he’s not dead. It’s that he is bloody alive and spreading around the world at the speed of knots.” The speaker slowly levels a steely stare at everyone in general and no one in particular. “And,” he adds, “I don’t want to hear any bad jokes from anyone about weight loss and the need for it in certain circumstances.”

Just then global director enters the room. “All right everyone,” his voice booms across the room, “listen up!”

Everyone gathers round and the director continues. “We’ve found one of the two owners of the horse,” he continues. “Supposed to be a bloke but we saw him doing all sorts of weird stuff using a tarp with two mares. Talks to them as though they’re supposed to understand him. Not the kind of thing a bloke does with horses. Pretty marvellous stuff actually but it’s obviously all trick training, girl’s stuff. Anyway, we have interrogated him and have discovered just what is meant when they say that this horse … what’s his name?”

“Gulliver, Sir,” a voice cries out.

“Ah, quite. Gulliver. Thank you, officer.” The director nods in the direction of the owner of the voice and then turns back to the group. “As I was saying, we have discovered just what it is that they mean when they say that this dead horse, Gulliver, is still alive.”

The director pauses for effect, aware that all eyes are upon him. His voice cuts through the stillness: “Well this bloke, the horse’s owner, has made some strange claims about this horse and I am going to need you to help me analyse them, so that we can understand what this movement is about and how we can stop it, because there are a number of very important people who believe that it could be a threat to entire horse industries around the world. Between you and me, though, when you hear what this bloke said during his interrogation, you will probably conclude, like me, that he has left the planet and gone to live with the fairies.

“Now this bloke, the owner, claims that the horse, Gulliver that is, had presence. Now what exactly do you think this means?”

Gulliver, the gentle giant gracefully present

Gulliver, the gentle giant gracefully present

“He must have been a winner then, Sir,” a voice volunteers.

“Nope, we’ve already checked that out. Racing name was ‘Emotional Hooligan’. A failed racehorse though. Lost every single one of his few outings in some one-horse town in the back of the Australian beyond. Oh, and the horse is dead. Not Gulliver, I mean, although he’s also gone … or not quite … but the one of the one-horse town. That’s the kind of place it is. So no, not a winner.”

“Must have been a right-old vicious mongrel, then Sir,” another voice volunteers. “You know, the kind that rears, kicks and bites, making everyone sit up in terror.”

“Not quite, I’m afraid, officer,” the director responds. “I’m afraid this Gulliver had a bit of reputation for being gentle, a bit clumsy at times, but definitely not vicious. Well, let me tell you what this bloke, the owner or one of them anyway, has to say about presence.”

The room falls silent again. The director pauses for dramatic effect. “Well this bloke claims that this horse … what’s his name … oh yes, Gulliver … he – no, not the horse, the bloke – he claims that this Gulliver has presence because he is friendly and calm but radiates authority. So my question is, ‘How can a horse radiate authority?’”

“I’ve only seen it in someone with a lot of power, Sir, another person offers. “Like a CEO, a general or even like yourself, Sir.”

“Power eh?” the director is sceptical. “So we have a horse that does not rear, bit or kick but is calm and gentle instead. Does that sound like power to you? Don’t answer that. Oh, and have I told you that the horse was just a few months shy of thirty years old when he died … if he … oh, whatever. So he was geriatric to boot. Of course this horse does not have power or didn’t. So again, how can or could this horse radiate authority?”

Everyone bows their head, hushed by the question. After a while the director breaks the silence. “I suppose we are going to have to rely on that bloke’s explanation again. He claims that this is because the horse is, was … whatever … let me see….” The director glances down at his notes and then continues, “decisive, dependable and trustworthy, because the horse was so completely in the moment, accepting everything as it happened but rising above it almost stoically, and because he was capable of communicating with energy, even with humans.’ What’s more, he goes on to claim that he learned all of this from the horse.”

Gulliver and Vicki: connection and communication with energy

Gulliver and Vicki: connection and communication with energy

“With energy?” a voice pipes up. “The bloke’s a fruitcake.”

“What, you don’t believe in energy?” the director asks in amazement. “Have you never heard of Einstein?”

“Of course, I do, I have, Sir,” the voice retorts. “We use energy for lighting, heating, cooking, entertainment, everything.”

“Well, not quite everything, officer,” the director corrects him, “but I get your point. Still, this bloke is talking about using energy to create a connection between a horse and a human, whatever that may mean, and to allow them to communicate with each other.”

“You mean like a mobile phone, Sir?” another voice interjects.

The director turns and glares at the voice. “Are you seriously suggesting that you have seen a horse use a mobile phone, officer?” he bellows. “I thought this bloke was supposed to be a fruitcake, to be playing with the fairies, not my officers.”

“Sorry, Sir.” The voice is meek and contrite.

“Now look, people,” the director raises his voice. “This is bloody serious. We have a bloke here claiming that his horse has shown him how to connect and communicate with the creature using nothing but energy and absolutely no domination, control or force. Let me emphasise this. He claims that he does not need any metal or leather restraints or … what does he call them?” The director turns to his notes, “let me see … ‘instruments of coercion made of metal, leather or any other hard substance to connect and interact with a horse’. In addition, he claims that, because … let me see,” the director glances down at his notes. “Yes, here it is. He claims that because the communication that occurs is spontaneous and works, no training is required. No horse training, no tack, no this and no that. Do you have any idea what this means? And not only that, we now have a rapidly expanding army of people around the world who are falling for this ridiculous approach and are trying to replicate it all over the place. In fact, there are so many people trying to do this, that it could even be called a ….”

Vicki and Gulliver: spontaneous communication without training

Vicki and Gulliver: spontaneous communication without training

Just then the door opens and a flustered officer barges in. “Excuse me, Sir,” he gasps. “I have been asked to give you this: an urgent communication from the front.”

“Front?” the director frowns quizzically as he reaches for the note and reads it. “The Gulliver Movement?” The frown disappears into an expression of disbelief. “It is a movement?” Disbelief dissolves into a look of utter horror. “A movement … and they call it the Gulliver Movement?”

“Yes, Sir. I believe so, Sir,” the messenger confirms.

“Right everyone,” the director turns to the group, drawing himself up to his full height. “This is an emergency. Do you have any idea what this means? Don’t answer that. I’ll tell you what it means. It means that there is a rapidly expanding army of madmen who are going to destroy us. Imagine it: everyone connecting and communicating with horses without control or coercion. Entire horse industries around the world that rely on the use of bits, whips and all the other hardware that we use on horses will come crashing down. Huge sectors of businesses will go bankrupt. And our organisation will become a ghost of its former self.

“This Gulliver Movement, we need to stop it in its tracks. We need to get to work right away, so I want….”

The door opens again and another office appears.

“What is it?”

“Another update from the front, Sir.” The officer extends his hand with another note.

“What does it say?”

“The Gulliver Movement, Sir, we know how it’s powered.”


“Yes, Sir, powered.”

“So how is it powered?”

“The Gulliver Movement, Sir,” the officer bends to the note in his hand, “it is powered by love.”

“By love? Oh no,” the director gasps. “How on earth can we defeat love?”

“Oh, and they also have a rallying call now, Sir.”

“A rallying call?”

“Yes, Sir, a rallying call.”

“Well what is it then? Tell me!”

“The Gulliver Movement’s rallying call, Sir, is ….”

“Get on with it man!”

“Gulliver is dead. Long live Gulliver!”

Andrew learning from Gulliver at his feet

Andrew learning from Gulliver at his feet



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2 Responses to “Gulliver is Dead. Long Live Gulliver!”

  1. Peggy Bienefelt says:

    Memories of Gulliver linger…. I met him first a number of years ago…what a special soul & what a connection………..A very special boy…loved always….Never forgotten….

  2. Laraine says:

    Oh Andrew, my heart aches for both you and Vicky.