Putin on horseback

The iconography of Mother Russia

Vladimir Putin, the tiger of the steppes, the rampant conqueror of the Odessa Butlins, the mountain man of the Urals, wrestles with his stallion.

No. This is by all accounts a very tired mare, who woefully knows that her end is not too far away. It was not her fault that she was burdened with Stalinist glory. Cow-hocked, unshod, she bears the five foot giant to the summit of a knoll, where he cries to the world:

“My name is Ozymandias,
king of kings:

Look on my works, ye
Mighty, and despair!”

Nothing beside remains.
Round the decay

Of that colossal wreck,
boundless and bare

The lone and level sands
stretch far away.

The poor old mare has not the faintest idea of destiny, but is clearly aware of her own. She may have had a small shot of Ketamin to douse her natural enthusiasm. A lead rein, used for children, runs from the curb on her bit to the girth. We salute you, dear lady, and mourn you.

She’s about 14.3hh, not much more than a pony, slightly smaller than our hero when he’s standing full height. In the meat market in the UK she’s worth about £250, or a little less. In Brussels, who knows?

Comments are welcome