Isn’t that a beautiful word? So simple. Three letters–JOY– They roll trippingly off the tongue.

Walt Whitman wrote: ‘O the horseman’s and the horsewoman’s joy.’ All of us who love horses and rides in the early morning cool, or late afternoon shadows, or under a full moon’s power know joy. One is never alone on horseback. The greatest joy comes from the warm comfort of a horse’s bareback. “The outside of a horses is good for the inside of a man.” Or woman.

“Sweets with sweets war, joy delights with joy.” That’s Will. Neat!

“Have you found joy in your life? Have you brought joy to others?”

Kind of a sticky wicket, isn’t it? I hope everyone in the world has found joy. I have. The best I can do on the second question is: did it balance? I hope so.

Then there’s music. Beethoven’s Ode to Joy. Listen to that and feel joy in every cell.  It captivates vitalizes the senses. The best piece of music ever written. Think of Beethovan’s joy in creating this masterpiece. It’ll never die. Imagine…

I think joy’s the emotion most sought after.

A secret. You can be joyful at any moment of the day or night, if you’re awake and breathing. You don’t have to beg, borrow, or steal it. You don’t need a mansion, a Rolls, a yacht, fame, or beauty. You don’t need money in the bank. You can’t buy it. It’s the most priceless thing in the world, nobody can put a price on it. Wherever you are, whatever your circumstance, joy can be yours. You can be shoveling horse manure or digging a ditch.

What was the most delightful moment in your lifetime? I hope it’s a difficult decision: you’ve had so many, you can pick and chose.

Think of that moment. Be there. Now. Go there. Now. Taste it, touch it, smell it, hear it, see it. Play it back in your mind like Beethoven played with sound.

One of my favorite moments was on horseback. A country horse show. The class in the ring, at the bottom of an amphitheater, was a clown act. One cowboy rode a horse. Two cowboys played the front end and the back-end of a calf. They cavorted. They rumbled. They danced. I was on a dapple gray Arab at the top of the amphitheater when suddenly my horse–Joy Ride, that was his name– had a horsey moment. His ears perked. His tail went up and his neck arched He snorted. He pranced his way down to the ring rattling spectators and folding chairs. No one seemed perturbed, except my mother. Who was hysterical.

Joy went nose to the ring. The cowboys loved it. Played along. When Joy caught on, he sneered and walked back  through the throng, who roared with laughter and applauded.The crowd loved us. Joy and I stole the show.

Thinking about it makes me happy. Joyful. You, too, I hope. Gotta share and make it balance.


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