I placed the saddle on his back, then pulled the cinch up tight. Old Cyruss turned and looked at me. He knew we’d be all right.

I’d seen that look a thousand times. We’d earned each other’s trust. And at my age a gentle horse, for dang sure is a must.

Old Cyruss ain’t no young one. I’d say prob’ly twenty-two. In human years we’re ‘bout the same. They say a rest is due.

I wonder if old Cyruss feels the stiffness from his age? The way my crooked fingers feel from rheumatism’s rage.

It seems like only yesterday, when I went off to work. The old men called me youngster and that drove me plumb berserk.

But now I look at Cyruss. He and I have both grown old. Now no one calls me youngster. It’s the wrinkles, I’ve been told.

And Cyruss doesn’t seem to have that spring left in his step. It’s obvious the two of us have up and lost our pep.

Some cowboys say that when a horse has lost his usefulness, “Just take him to the sale. It’s not a sign of selfishness.”

I can’t imagine any other fellow on my horse. The bond between a horse and rider shares a mighty force.

Old Cyruss has been good to me and I’ve been good to him. The chance of selling Cyruss, well I’d say it’s mighty slim.

Most trainers tell you that a horse should never be a friend. I guess I broke that rule, ‘cuz he’s my friend right to the end.

And soon enough we’ll turn him out to pasture for a time. I’ll feed and keep him company and hope that God is kind.

And when I get so doggone old and need someone to care. I hope I’m treated kindly ‘til I meet old Cyrus there.