Pegasus the Horse: An Affirmation of Healing


Pegasus the Horse: An Affirmation of Healing

Pegasus the Horse: An Affirmation of Healing

Our founder crafted this poem after experiencing an incredible coincidence which occurred while being being tattooed. She had chosen the tattoo after being inspired by a passage within Waking the Tiger written by Peter Levine, the creator of a revolutionary trauma resolution method called Somatic Experiencing. The carefully selected intention of the Pegasus as the tattoo image served to mark an important moment on the trajectory of her healing journey after rape. This poem, Pegasus the Horse, celebrates the intrinsic wisdom of every living being to not only survive trauma, but in fact, to be transformed through the courageous effort to heal. This challenging and ongoing process often brings the unexpected, magnificent resources we already hold within to the surface of our lived experience. Pegasus the Horse is dedicated to the endless teachings and gifts of nature that are available to us if we can still ourselves long enough to notice them. You can also read the full story that inspired this poem in her essay “The Physiology of Resilience“.


Pegasus the Horse

Pegasus the Horse,

flesh, tendon and unbridled velocity

pulsing, beating heart

respiration sounding the storm,

like wind,

like the feeling of having overcome,

having been able to outrun,

cardiac catharsis churns out

sweat on a wet coat

smooth and shiny

sinewy shadows of muscular strength

running, leaping, in spontaneous stride

rhythm unbroken,

uninhibited coordination, innate and ongoing

tearing up the ground beneath for the simple purpose

one destination,


four legs, one articulate tail, crushing but humble weight,

and a mane that bends with the air we breathe

the physiology of resilience.


Pegasus the Bird of Prey,

soaring, feather power circling upwards

hollow bones borne of an uncluttered mind

cumulative practice

effortless manipulation of an energetic current

an ease that comes with capturing universal abundance,

the atmosphere’s treasures

responsive to weather, pressure, heat and clouds, moving up and moving down

water repellant, wind empowered,

visions of the future, past, present

and internal sight

movement requiring the specificity of the here and now,

touching down and reaching in

depth perception, far sightedness and precision

surrender and stability,

relying solely on the shape it was given,

the arc in the sky

nature makes no mistakes.


Pegasus My Flesh,

colors bleed slow like sunset

pink, turquoise, orange, yellow, purple into blue

colors to brighten my view

fierce and ready to protect,

this flesh taken back, this wound taken back

catalyzed by my primitive brain un-thwarted

sealed and seared into skin

my body reclaimed with needles and sweat and color and tears

an ink to pull out the poison

the kind eyes and clear soul of an artist that paints our capacity to transcend

and a pre-destined song assumes new meaning within this space,

the vastness of this pain, and the clearness of this purpose

a prayer mobilized through sensation,

now charging ahead with thick-thighed legs

draws the line between all that is possible

and all that I once feared

traces a form, that is at once bird and beast and the soul unbound

erases distance, cultivates the interconnection of the body

and the mind

and the infinite space inside.


Pegasus to Mark the Ending,

hooves leaving trampled memories

like ashes

returning to the Earth

triggers and sensations refer no longer

to my Breaking,

but rather

to my Becoming

conflicted identity formerly conflated with an indescribable sorrow,

held tenderly,

at last,

reveals beneath its own tension and pulling,

a flexibly firm knowing

full of the moment’s

unquenchable longing

burning, scabbing, healing

resting, attending and grieving,

some kind of wonderful will be revealed.


Pegasus to Mark the Beginning,

unfolding, liberating, mastery and breath

weighty and thunderous

and patiently quiet,

like beams of light traveling back from space

to whisper cosmic wisdom, and soften the path ahead

new wings and exponential speed

my momentum unleashed

counter-balanced by a dream to remember this slowly

impressions and images settle and digest

a cycle turning towards complete

the clear sensing eyes of an animal untamed

the clear seeing heart of an animal untamed

my return, marked forever by each breath I take

the ribcage of holding,

of self-protection,

patterned by this Story,

still so much unfolding, still so much untold,

necessarily, still moving

drawing in, expanding out,

soaring, galloping

and once again,



Pegasus the Horse was written by Molly Boeder Harris, Founder and Executive Director of The Breathe Network. Learn more about Molly’s work supporting survivors of sexual violence through the holistic practices of yoga and Somatic Experiencing in Portland, Oregon by visiting her practitioner page