Mirie it is

Mirie it is while sumer y-last
With fugheles son
Oc nu neheth windes blast
And weder strong.
Ei, ei! What this nicht is long
And ich with wel michel wrong
Soregh and murne and fast.

[Beginning of the 13th century]

Mirie – merry
y-last – lasts
fugheles – birds
son – sound, song
Oc – but
nu – now
neheth – neareth, draws closer
weder strong – fierce weather
What… long – Oh but how long
ich – I
wel michel – “well mickle,” very much
Soregh – sorrow, grieve
murne – mourn

Text and glossary from http://www.luminarium.org/medlit/medlyric/merryitis.php

Audio version here: http://www.last.fm/music/Trouvere/_/Miri+it+is

I’ve been singing this to myself off and on all winter to keep me mindful that people have been successfully horse owning through the British winter for many centuries before me and hopefully will for many centuries to come. Drifter and I are much better fed, housed and clothed than our ancestors, so if they could get through the winter we can manage it too.

But I need rely on this song no more! Drifter is predicting Spring! The moulting has begun!

Thankfully as his body is completely clipped it is only moulting millimeter long hairs. His unclipped legs are parting company with enormous quantities of hair up to six centimeters long so I’m really glad not to have to manage that all over his body this year.

For those who do not groom moulting horses I recommend this cartoon which illustrates the experience. (Also recommended for those who do.) http://www.theideaoforder.com/?id=106

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