John Jay High School.
San Antonio, TX.

"Que viva los mustangs!"

The Friday morning pep rally,
livened by school mascot,

in his polyester suit

Mariachi band introduces
its sound to the air,
blue collection of ache.

The marching band plays.
"Who dat be, who dat be
in the white and blue?
Them Jay boys be comin' through!"

"Who you gettin' crunk with?
John Jay Mustangs!"

"Said, who you gettin' crunk with?
John Jay Mustangs!"

The teachers held a grito contest
to see who can make wailing
sound like smiling.

I pick at the white
horse emblem on my school shirt
and imagine

having a body that outlasts
this moment:

in the heat

A ceremony
of ringing throats
& wind.

The letter
of the law
reigning over
the land.

Que viva los mustangs.

desire to be eternal

The Seven Mustangs, inscription.
1947. Sculpture, bronze.
University of Texas at Austin.

"Immense herds of wild horses,"

Stephen F. Austin
marked across


on his map of Texas, 1829.
The horse of history was not native
to the Western hemisphere.
Mesteñas, whence Mustangs -
were the escaped descendants of horses
brought to America by the Spaniards.

"Next to God, we
owed our victory to the horses,"

wrote the chronicles
of the conquest of Mexico.

These horses
bore Spanish explorers
across two continents.
They brought to the Plains Indians
the age of horse culture.

Spanish horse, Texas cow, pony
and mustang were all one
in those times when as sayings went,

a man was no better than his horse,
and a man on foot was no man at all.

Like the longhorn, the mustang has been virtually bred out of existence.

But mustang horses will always symbolize Western frontiers.

long trails of longhorn herds, seas of pristine grass, and

men riding free in a free land