The symbolism of an animal
Once, I saw a horse-pulled cart right before me. The little horse was very third rate and classless, with an ugly gray color and unsightly stains.
He was so thin that the point of junction between his feet and trunk appeared to form enormous elbows and shoulders. And his body looked like an ugly tube hanging from four large feet. Hideous!
He had trotted and trotted in city pollution, eating poorly, feeling cold, and becoming horribly tired! And one could see that both owner and beast were returning home.
That little animal had given all he had, he was almost dying from giving. One could see he would die prematurely by giving so much of himself.
If this could be said of an animal, I saw in him good humor, good disposition, and an underlying joy in giving. In all that insignificance he had dedication and a little joy, he trotted content in that ugliness, sadness and misery. Contented with trotting a little.
He was ugly, had innumerable defects, but was a dedicated animal who gave with joy. He gives even his last breath, the last thing he can give.
But he does not do it with a melodrama: “Look, here goes my last tear...”
No! He trots with joy until the moment he drops dead.
This is abnegation, one that does not measure its sacrifice or anything but has only one question: “Have I given everything? If I have given everything, I will be happy to have contented the one I serve.”
Until today I remember that animal with sympathy, for as a symbol it was very expressive.
by Plinio Correa de Oliveira
 Conversation, August 4, 1983.