Tinker Posted April 6, 2022 Share Posted April 6, 2022 The Horsemen Clouds of dirt and dust spit rocks, churned by pounding hooves thundering across the dry, open plain. Buzkashi is back! Teams of 10 men, whips held in strong teeth, mounted on butter fed, endurance trained horses, powerful and swift battle for sometimes days upon the field. These are the Chapandaz! The prize, the carcass of a calf or goat, beheaded, weighted with sand wrestled horseback from player to player to be carried around a flag and thrown into the Circle of Justice. Man and horse, bodies bumped, whipped, kicked and charged, game lasting up to 10 days. Brutal, primitive play. The National Sport of Afghanistan! What could we expect? ~~Judi Van Gorder Note: The Taliban just reinstated the game after a decade long ban and then a decade long pause by war. Games were held in Kabul in March 2022. I first read about the games in a novel in the 70s before Russia's invasion. Having read the book, I felt the Russians didn't have a chance against these people. Ferocious, primitive and enduring. So when we invaded decades later, I had a similar feeling. I prayed we would quickly find the terrorist camps, destroy them and get out. My love of horses drew me to the games, I cringe at its brutality and unavoidable injury to these noble animals and yet the game fascinates me and I see it as the character of the Afghani. It is a defining element of their culture which needs to be honored. Quote ~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~ For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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