Yvonne Hollenbeck
Baloney

Sam Jackson
Cowboy Poetry Competition
A Cowboy Poem
Poetic Stimulation
Cowboy Poets
Rhymin'

V. June Blevins Collins
One-Sided, Treasured Friendships

Monte R. McDonald
Cowboy Poetry

Rose Mary Allmendinger
Cowboy Culture

Jay Jones
Recalling the Rhyme
The Compliment

Mike Keenan
The Cowboys and the Important Poet

Sybella Beyer-Snyder 
Bronc Busters and Bards

Tim Kauffroath
Range Rhymin'

 

BackForward

Page Two of Seven

 

 

Baloney

There's a hundred thousand ranchers that are left here in this land,
and the same amount of waddies that they call their hired hands.

There's eleven thousand fellers that rodeo full-time
or at least pay entry fees 'though they never make a dime.

Add another hundred thousand that team rope every day,
and a bunch of country singers whoa re cowboys, so they say.

It's a little hard to figure, go ahead and do the math,
how less than half a million folks are trotting down that path.

HOWEVER,

There's a million cowboy poets, or at least they "claim" to be,
reaching for the stars and for all the world to see.

There's more poets than there's cowboys ...got 'em beat by two-to-one,
and I'm not one to argue and I'm sure not poking fun,

but I'm wondering if lots of them aren't just a little phony,
and what them fellers write about is just plain ol' baloney.

© 2005, Yvonne Hollenbeck
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

 

Read more of Yvonne Hollenbeck's poetry here.


 

A Cowboy Poem


I'd like to write a 'Cowboy Poem'
  but there's some skills that I
must first have firmly in my mind
  before I 'versify'.

A poem is how we might express
  to others how we feel,
about our dreams, our schemes, our thoughts,
  though fanciful or real.

Writing helps our spelling and
  vocabulary grows.
It also gives our minds a rest
  from livings cares and woes.

'Poetic License', is a term
  that many think is great,
it gives us due permission so
  we may exaggerate.

There's many patterns can be used
  when writing verse or prose.
Most 'cowboy' stuff is metrical,
  sounds better, I'd suppose.

To rhyme, the words must sound the same,
  as do both cot and draught.
Although appearance differs much
  their spelling matters not.

Yes, ate and bait and straight all rhyme.
  Two words can rhyme with one;
as kick it goes with thicket, see-
  how rhymin' can be fun?

There's many words that look alike
  with spelling near the same,
when carefully sounded out you'll see
  to rhyme they have no claim.

Important are the syl-la-bles,
  those units of a word,
let's keep them constant in each line
  so rhythm can be heard.

A 'couplet' is two lines that rhyme
  some poets use them all the time-
but if you start a poem with one-
  keep with it 'till your story's done!

 There's other rules we must learn
   when writing western verse.
 Use words the way you usually talk,
   just as you would converse.

 Don't write a sentence backwards just
   to make the last word rhyme
 as; "We are on a hike today
    and up the hill we climb
,
"

 Our teachers spend unselfish years
   to teach us how to speak-
 Then 'Cowboy Poets' come along
   with words and sounds unique.

 We're prone to use some 'lazy talk,'
   most Western people do.
 Leavin' of some endin' "g's,"
   and sayin' "ya'll" for "you."

 But shucks, don't fret about that none,
   we'll write our verse and then-
 take off our boots and cowboy hats-
   speak good as new again!

 So now, my friends, take pen-in-hand
   let's get a runnin' start,
 commit your thoughts to paper and-
   make sure they're from the heart!

  
© Sajac
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Read more of Sam Jackson's poetry here.

Featured in "The Big Roundup," an anthology of the best of CowboyPoetry.com.

 

Poetic Stimulation

 I figure to become a famous poet,
    and once my mind has set upon a task,
 will do my level best as not to blow it,
    so-- putting on my best poetic mask-

 Saunter down to Barneys Noble book store,
    an' ask'em for a book with lots'a word.
 "Would a million do sir?" I said "Oh shore
    no harm in havin' some that I ain't heard"!

 What set me on this rhymesical adventure?
    A story in a science magazine!
 While at the dentists waiting for my denture,
    read all about this 'fixture' in my bean.

 "The Brain," it flatly stated, "is the fastus
    computer, unskilled labor's ever made.
 Compact and cool running so's ta last us
    for cogitating in the sun or shade.

 Ten billion cells, each one it claims, a storin',
    at least two megs of information bits.
 Keeps right on hummin', even when we're snorin',
    ordains us to be dull, or great poe-its!"

 "Ah-ha!" says I, "With such a power factor,
    computin' in my head a'while I muse,
 I could become a surgeon or an actor,
    or even-yes, a poet-- should I choose".

 With open book and paper I am started,
    but Whoa-this stuff ain't soundin' like it should!
 Even when them sylly-bulls are sorted,
    the meter and the cadence ain't so good!

 It says  "Cerebral cortex stimulation
    will often set creative juices free".
 So-drawing on my recent education-
    I figure out what that might do fer me.

Perhaps a 'tich - or - two' of sippin' whiskey?
    then if that doesn't cause me to inspire-
 at least it might result in getting' frisky,
    and sure enough could light some other fire!

 Salute!! Oh aqua-vitae, start your charmin'.
    I shudder as it sinks into my gut.
 The burnin' in my throat is quite alarmin'!
    A painful way to stem poetic rut.

 With pen-in-hand awaiting mystic glimmer,
    a twitching in my eye sets me alert.
 Comes next, it seem me brain begins to simmer!
    Suffice to say; "no longer I'm inert"!

 Carrumba!! Words start flashing through my mind now.
    I write one verse in clever metaphor.
 If  "one" spawns verbal hemorrhage of this kind- wow!
    what literary treats, if I sip more?

 My pen is drafting words as though some genie's
    had just released Bill Shakespeare from a flask.
 More stimulation for my dop-a-meenies-
    Such brilliant work is now a simple task.

 Example? You dare ask for confirmation?
    No, dear friend, for I would dare suppose,
 that judging from your common occupation,
    me thinks your mind's not ready for such prose!

©  Sajac
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Read more of Sam Jackson's poetry here.

Featured in "The Big Roundup," an anthology of the best of CowboyPoetry.com.

 

Cowboy Poetry Competition

So--The wife and yer mama and paid hired hand
  all tell ya; "yer rhymin' is good!!"
Insist that on stage "the performance is grand!
  jist don't get applause that ya should."

Perhaps folks are lazy?  Or clap with one hand?
  or deaf in the ear, ya suppose?
Or maybe, just maybe, they live in town-and,
  don't quite understand cowboy prose?

Whatever the problem, ya might wonder how
  your stuff will stack up against peers,
That invite that came in the mail just now
  says; "Join competitions pioneers".

 America's built on this kind of a thing.
  Competition has helped make it great.
 Excellence our goal, perfection is king,
  objectives the wise advocate.

 Just put up your money, then ride each event,
  a 'rodeo'  it's bein' called,
 and if ya gets throwed, only ego is bent,
  so least ways, yer body ain't mauled.

 Prize money's paid, there's enhances the fun,
  and goes to each high scorin' ride,
 and last, but not least, for year, 'triple ought one'
  come braggin' rights---all certified.

 So get on yer hoss, rein his head to the West,
  let's see where you stand in this crowd.
 Come show'em who's boss, and who ranks second best-
  regardless, you'll walk away proud!

© Sajac
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Read more of Sam Jackson's poetry here.

Featured in "The Big Roundup," an anthology of the best of CowboyPoetry.com.

 

 

Cowboy Poets
  
(of what they write)

They write of the 'old' days, of long ago friends
     of horses and dogs they have had.
Of times they were younger, of dreams and pretends,
     and stories that tell of their dad.

They write of the mountains and prairies they cross,
     with danger a part of each day.
Admit all their trappings might load on one hoss,
     as freedom means more than the pay.

They write of the romance and loves set aside,
     lost, as they've chosen a life
not privy to luxury and tokens of pride
     other men offer a wife.

They write of the everyday hardships employed,
     accept them as part of the times,
and tell of some pleasures we've never enjoyed
     except through their treasure of rhymes.

They set their adventures to paper with pen,
     then with humble parade, pass on.
Another steps forward, starts writing, and then-
     overshadows the bard just gone.

By using this measure, they pass on the wit
     and wisdom they'd like us to keep.
With noble tradition, they're bound to commit
     their stories before they sleep.

© Sajac '02

Read more of Sam Jackson's poetry here.

Featured in "The Big Roundup," an anthology of the best of CowboyPoetry.com.

 

                                 Rhymin'

                        I've been asked many times about rhymin',
                                    how does one compose lines of verse?
                        Some folks might surmise, that poets are wise,
                                    could be that it's just the reverse!

                        A poem is quite similar to sculpture,
                                    it first must be formed in your mind.
                        Determine the aim, you'd like to proclaim,
                                    which fans you are trying to find.

                        Use caution when choosing the subject
                                    on which your new lyric will dwell.
                        Be sure to pick one, 'bout things you have done,
                                    if not, you should research it well.

                        I'm alluding to my methods only,
                                    we each have a different forte'.
                        For example; some write in seclusion,
                                    while others prefer the café.

                        So, get out your pencil and paper.
                                    Note how it will start and then end.
                        Next jot down enough, for in-between stuff,
                                    now you have an outline, my friend.

                        Start chippin' and filin' and grindin',
                                    and don't be afraid to be bold.
                        Just add words an' change'em, erase'em, arrange'em
                                    until what you mean, has been told.

                        Don't worry too long at one setting,
                                    fatigue doesn't help us reflect,
                        and sure ain't conducive, to writin' exclusive,
                                    those stanzas demandin' respect.

                        An item of utmost importance
                                    is; keepin' the theme sharp and clear.
                        Pay little attention, to mundane convention.
                                    pen just what you want'em to hear.

                        One thing that will give more enjoyment,
                                    as novice scans poetic line;
                        is; cadence, some folks call it meter.
                                    Enhances the rhythm design.

                        You might add a bit of clean humor.
                                    If subject is 'lite,' add in more.
                        Be careful you don't make it foolish,
                                    that isn't what good verse is for.

                        Use caution how you set the words in,
                                    as 'sequence' can change the result.
                        If writing an ode to a "House Cat" -
                                    'transposing' could mean some insult!

                       In ending I'll pass on this adage,
                                    (a favorite one of my Pa's)
                        "A poem's like a good lookin' woman-
                                    The best of them have a few flaws!
"

                       
© Sajac
                              This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Read more of Sam Jackson's poetry here.

Featured in "The Big Roundup," an anthology of the best of CowboyPoetry.com.

 

One-Sided, Treasured Friendships
  

This is to all you cowboy poets, out there
Off the stage, and behind the microphone.
You fit a mold, cherished since childhood
Together, "Cowboy manners," stand alone.

We had hove to, again, for another gathering
With a gladness, which comes from our heart.
Much like close neighbors, we're so glad to see,
For throughout year, we all live quite far apart.

Yes, it is why I question, and often ponder,
As the wanderings of my mind, tend to stray.
 In review of personalities, and special poets,
Which have entertained us, along the way.

In my minds eye, you have become an acquaintance,
As thru years, we've chosen among you, to dwell.
In presence of your gritty voices, and smiling faces,
We've heard you unravel stories, loudly talk, and tell.

It is hard to remember, its a one sided friendship,
One that's only, registered partially, upon your brain.
For in our visions, we reminisce, picture, and cherish.
In your thinking, we may have become quite a strain.
 
Its difficult to visualize, we're strangers to most of you,
When on other hand, we feel, nearly as close as kin.
But some times we sense, that almost agitation,
Like your space is being damaged, beneath the skin.
 
However, there does seems to be, another equation,
Which might  be used sometimes, for more thought.
Would you have endured the years, of push, and shove,
If none of us gave a hang, cared about or knew you not.
 
If suddenly, you all became invisible to us,
And only, your lone voices could we hear.
Would you? Could you? Stand its wear and tear,
'Cause some of your voices sound, not so clear.
 
We could not be glad to see you, if we'd never seen you,
For the unknown, has a way of putting us all under attack.
Might some voice, and unknown face, sound blamed empty?
Would it then take some fine tuning, and honing, to attract.
 
But maybe! With all that digital stuff, floating around out there,,
We too, just might be made attracted to any kind of old voice.
If some tiny artificial friendship letters, somehow  got imbedded?
FOR WE ARE ALL DREAMERS!-But, "Thanks to God!"
Your real, COWBOY POETRY-- STILL IS OUR CHOICE!

© 2005, V. June Blevins Collins
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

 

Read more of V. June Blevins Collins' poetry here.

 

Cowboy Poetry

Seems there's an awful lot of people
Picking up a pen
And writing cowboy poetry
Just because it's in.
I'd read quite a lot of it
And It kind'a seemed to me
That mostly it weren't cowboys
Who wrote that poetry.
They don't tell about the work he does
Nor the way he lives and thinks.
They're mostly 'bout his trips to town
And the whiskey that he drinks.
So I figured that I'd write one
That would tell for a change
How a cowboy lives and thinks
And works out on the range.
I thought about a cattle drive,
Nope, that wouldn't be so hot.
It wouldn't be exciting
Unless I lied a lot.
How about a branding? Cows and calves a bawling,
The smell of burning hair.
Nope, just men and horses working
Not much excitement there.
Or a day spent classing cattle
When you think you're gonna freeze
'Cause it's edging down to zero
With a mighty bracing breeze.
The harder I tried to write a poem
The plainer I could see
I couldn't put on paper
What this life means to me.
A morning on the desert
About the first of June
When coyotes are still howling
A talking to the moon.
Where new spring calves are playing
And kicking up their heels,
Trotting out to make your gather
The way a good horse feels,
Some mustangs on the skyline
Leaving on the run
Their dust trail blue as willow smoke
In the early morning sun.
The first sight of a wagon camp
With teepees scattered round,
Wrangling in the darkness
When it's mostly done by sound.
A mountain meadow in the summer
Full of yearling steers,
A good horse sorting cattle
The way he works his ears,
Getting on a horse
You know you just can't ride.
Wishing your saddle horn was bigger
So you'd have more room to hide.
There's many things I'd write about
If only I knew how,
About good men and horses
The handling of a cow.
I've wrestled this all evening
And just can't make a start
At putting down on paper
What I'm feeling in my heart.
So maybe it was cowboys
Who wrote that poetry.
Next time I'll try a subject
That don't mean so much to me.

© 2007, Monte R. McDonald
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

 

Read more of Monte R. McDonald's poetry here.

 

Cowboy Culture

..... a workday devotion .....


The Culture of the Cowboy, such as poems and prose and art,
Has always mirrored the image of his work, spoke from the heart.
In his mind, and shared with others camping 'round the fire,
It was his workday labor motivating plots conspired.

For months on end they rode alone, no woman in their sight;
Working cattle in the daylight, 'round the fire at night.
They fantasized their mission with the legends they conceived;
They finalized a hero with a brand from God received.

When hearts were light and music clear they formed a square to dance.
Every second Cowboy donned an apron as he pranced.
For only when a cattle drive was finished would they go
Into a town to find a woman, wild oats there to sow.

Few Cowboys settled with a spouse, became a family man.
They only left the ranges when their lifestyle reached its span.
To some, and often to themselves, they were just orphaned men.
Isolated with each other, lonesome with their kin.

Those nineteenth century Cowboys wrote a floating text each day
Upon the cattle, claiming chattel, for a rancher's pay.
The brands they burnt were literature, the language of the West.
But stories, myths and poetry were fluid, oral texts.

The stories told were seldom written down upon a page;
A Cowboy's art depicted scenes of work he had engaged.
It was around a campfire where he first concocted rhyme;
Collaborated tales spoke a Cowboy's workday mime.

For many years there were few written down with pen and ink;
Were only written when the cattle industry would sink.
Late in the 1800s unemployment on the range
Separated Cowboys from their peers, life rearranged.

Blizzards, droughts, barbed wire fences entered ranchers' lives.
Railroads crisscrossed through the West negating cattle drives.
Some Cowboys used the skills they knew to rustle cattle then;
Others turned detective to find rustlers, bring them in.

Cowboys left those campfires when they rode off into town,
Supporting those they cared for with whatever work around.
Only in their isolation from historic days
Did pen unite with paper writing memories down to stay.

They wrote their rhymes they shared thereafter not around the fire,
But for themselves and for those strangers they could now inspire.
Most no longer rode a horse or chased a cow all day,
But memories that they put to paper soon began to pay.

Their audience for art and legend, mysteries and rhyme,
No longer was the campfire oratory of past times.
They found the willing ears of dreamers who would idolize
A glimpse into the fantasies a Cowboy lives and dies.

And soon the clamor for those legends, rhymes all written down,
Descended into main street of 'most every single town.
Demand, romance, soon made its way to urban fireplaces.
Big-Hat-No-Cattle people started typing in those spaces.

But none of that diminishes the Culture of the Cowboy
Whose workday and imagination fueled artful ploys.
Somewhere, but few and far between, The Cowboy rides the range,
Adjusting his profession now to centuries of change.

To mimic is the truest form of flattery man knows.
To The Cowboy such respect the public now bestows.
If God reincarnated nineteenth-century-old cowhands,
Imagine their reaction to the people in the stands!

In all their wildest dreams they forged around those fires in camp,
No way those boys could reckon books now read 'neath urban lamps!
They hardly were society's crowned princes of their day.
And certainly few urban folk were prone to live their way.

A gathering that drew a crowd to hear them spout their rhymes,
Would be the furthest thing of all within their Cowboy minds.
Many famous persons are not honored while they live;
It's only when they're dead and buried honors will we give.

So when we group together now and share a Cowboy rhyme,
Please bow your head and give respect to those who lived that time.
Thank God that each was branded by His hand, can ride His range,
And that the Cowboy Culture will survive each century's change!

© 2001 Rose Mary Allmendinger
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Read more of Rose Mary Allmendinger's poetry here.

Featured in "The Big Roundup," an anthology of the best of CowboyPoetry.com.

 

Recalling the Rhyme

I'd just joined the Association
Of Missouri Cowboy Poets
For many years I'd write a poem
And have no place to show it

At last I had a showplace
For my rhyming truth and lies
Then they told me not to read my poems
They should all be memorized

That took my brand new rainbow
And ripped it all to shreds
'Cause ten minutes after eating
I can't recall what I was fed

I can't remember birthdays
I forget my old friends names
Phone numbers are a hopeless case
My anniversary's a guessing game

Of course my wife caught on to that real quick
Multiple anniversaries she don't mind
She never tells me what the real date is
Just takes the presents every time

But I love this Western poetry
And not wishing to appear absurd
I decide to commit to memory
Just one poem word - by -word

Now you can't practice poetry silently
You must speak the words out loud
I find it odd the way some people act
When they see you alone addressing a crowd

My wife soon knew my lines by heart
'Course I was stuck on the second verse
She made it clear she'd not be near
When I decided to rehearse

My cat and dog ran and hid
My friends grew hard to find
My horse got spooky and hard to catch
All because of my Western rhyme

So I practiced with a mirror
Now that's a gruesome sight to see
This huge old gray haired cowboy
Watchin' me just watchin' me!

But I practiced and I practiced
Until at last the day arrived
When I was scheduled for an appearance
And I had my lines all memorized

Soon enough the big day came
And I stepped out upon the stage
I was positive I knew my lines
So I left behind the printed page

It flowed along so quick and smooth
I had that big crowd in my hands
At last I reached the final verse
The big finale I had planned

And that last verse was so important
On it the whole poem rested
Just to finish one whole poem
Was worth the work I had invested

I struck a pose to speak the lines
But what they were I knew not
I had 'em somewhere here up in my head
But just where I plum forgot

I know my face turned flaming red
As I stood there dumb and stricken
The audience changed from friendly folks
Into vultures seekin' their next victim

My knees got weak and shaky
I was sure my heart would burst
But I couldn't recall a single line
At least none that I'd rehearsed

In desperation I squared my shoulders
Buried deep my shame and rage
Said, "etcetra, etcetra, etcetra"
And strolled proudly from the stage

© Jay Jones  2/2000
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Read more of Jay Jones' poetry here.

Featured in "The Big Roundup," an anthology of the best of CowboyPoetry.com.

 

The Compliment 

"You're a pretty good cowboy poet, mister"
The voice came from behind
I turned around to thank the man
Who liked my western rhyme

He stood there polite and smiling
With real sincerity on his face
And when he stuck his hand at me
I was quick to meet the shake

I had seen him on the front row
As I took my turn on stage
He was quick to smile and laugh and clap
Though his eyes seemed sometimes vague

He was a child of innocence
Full grown in body but not in mind
With a vision that saw and embraced a world
With a pure clearness I can't find

As I looked into his honest eyes
And saw he meant each word he spoke
"You're a pretty good cowboy poet, mister"
Meant a lot to this cowpoke

© Jay Jones, 3-25-01
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

 

Read more of Jay Jones' poetry here.

Featured in "The Big Roundup," an anthology of the best of CowboyPoetry.com.

 

 

The Cowboys and the Important Poet


"Important" poems don't rhyme no more.
They start real sad with stuff like war
and busted hopes to make things worse
with good old death to end the verse.
Tortured souls are fine, I guess,
(that's why we got the IRS)
but when I'm old and looking back
at important artists wearing black;
when I've traded steak for peas
and each breath is a reedy wheeze,
I want to be the guy who wrote
some happy verse to help us float
above the depths of life's dark sea.
It ain't important.  It's just me.
Okay, my brow's set kind of low.
(Once said mer-lott instead of merlot.)
When asked if I enjoyed Van Gogh:
"He played real good for Buffalo!"

But I sure do love them cowboy poems.
Grizzled men who got no homes
except their saddles and the prairie,
shooting snakes and growing hairy.
The simple life is what they seek
with simple friends named Sam and Zeke.
Their code of justice is swift and raw.
"Punched him so hard it hurt his Maw."
Imagine if we exposed these guys
to a poet of "important" size.
We'd comb the cafes and the schools
for token intellect-jewels.
Choose one full of doom and death
clad in black and bad of breath.
He writes how life is so unfair,
impressing girls with armpit hair.
Transport his butt to South Dakota
at some campfire with a load of
cowpokes who pushed herd all day
with simple hearts and souls of clay.
Dinner's done, the night air's still,
dogies settling on yonder hill.
Gold flames light this resting place
reflecting sweat on each leathered face.
Smokes are lit, a bottle's passing.
Off in the hills a coyote fastens
into a mournful, scornful wail;
a fitful spirit on a faithless trail.
The cowboys number eight or nine.
A fifth of Jack and they're feeling fine
when one old wrangler, name of Ace,
addressed their guest: "Hey, Outer Space...
s'time to move yore fat behind
n' strew yore pearls before us swine."
"Swine, indeed!  You should be so gifted,"
sniffed our genius as he shifted
into his recital mode,
with practiced scowl he stood and strode
into the middle of the crew--
an important poem he commenced to spew.
"Cheesegrate me
below absolute zero
to the void of narcotic night
then deeper than the deadest sleep.
I fry my filth and eat my angst..."
He took up an hour of good sleeping time
with nasty words that never rhyme
and nobody knew just what he said
except the part about being dead.
Then came the crack of a distant gun.
With balletic twirl, that poet spun
ending in a crumpled heap
of Dakota dust and eternal sleep.
They stared for minutes at that pile.
Old Ace was first to crack a smile:
"Someone was happy to oblige yew
with a .44  to guide yew
to what yew said yew wanted, son.
Guess a little death never hurt no one."

To this day, no one can figure
who did pull that unknown trigger.
Could've been an accident or such.
'Course nobody liked his poem much.
Yet from that night on, in those western skies
there's a bit more angst in the coyotes' cries.
Even though our poet was laid to waste,
them coyotes found him in real good taste.

                   
© 2001, Mike Keenan
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

 

Read more of Mike Keenan's poetry here.

 

Bronc Busters and Bards 

A campfire cast shadows on the badland buttes,
coyotes  joined a duet with an owl's hoots.
I sat with all the roundup trail cowpokes,
ate Cookie's chili stew... men told bad jokes
of burnt biscuits and son-of-a-gun stew.
The cattle's all corralled no chores left to do.
but for us to bed down under big skies--
the tall tales kept coming each with big lies.
When cowhand Tex told -- how it used to be --
when he drove longhorns for the old Bar-Tee!
"In days gone by for only a dollar
plus the coupons from a tobaccee tin:
a wrangler became a campfire scholar--
quoting Shakespeare...reciting Gunga Din."
Willie Brett, spoke up,
"Boys, I've been a rodeo star with the proud title
Cowboy Poet an' I find folks listen to my verse
yep...now-a-days I'm a bronc busting bard--
my poems tell how I won my big rodeo purse."
Cowpokes today carve out brand new careers
We do more than just wrangle longhorn steers!

© Sybella Beyer-Snyder
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Read more of Sybella Beyer-Snyder's poetry here.

 

Range Rhymin'

"How do you rhyme so?" the lady asked
            with eyes 'a questionin light

"Shucks Ma'am," the cowboy said
            "They just sorta ride in on the night."

"I'll be lyin in my bedroll
             a gazin at the stars

Far away from folks and towns,
            them city streets and cars

Then on that gentle night time breeze
            A thought or phrase arrives,

Followed by 'Poetic' words
            in those prairie lullabies

Then more lines and phrases I'll behold
            Writ in stardust on the moon

While the night birds and the coyotes
            Set the meter with their tune

And when the sky turns inky black
            just 'fore dawn's iridescent hue

I'll light my fire and contemplate
            a final verse or two

Now the sunrise casts its rays
            upon a glorious frosty morn

Each crystal prism seems to shout,
            'A brand new poem is born!'

So just as sure as skies are blue,
            And fallen snowflakes glisten,

Those poems are there for anyone
            Who'll take the time to listen."

 The Lady said, "Well that may be,
            But surely, I'd suppose.

It takes a special talent to turn
            'Poetry' from 'Prose.'"

The cowboy nodded his assent
            Knowin what she said was true,

"But also Inspiration and that's
            what I get from you.

The greatest talent is to listen
            to what other people say

Then re-arrange their very words
            In a 'Rhymey' sorta way

And no matter what the subject,
            In sky, or land, or sea.

There's poetry in each and all
            If you'll listen carefully"

Yet the cowboy's heart was filled with joy
            To think that she would care

For his "poetic" offerings
            This kindly lady fair

 How thoughts of her would fill his mind
            Whilst ridin out alone

And soon they'd turn some thing she'd said
            Into another poem

"Now thank you for your kindly words
            Such friends are far too few

And folks I hope you'll understand
            That this here poem's for you

It's sorta my way of sayin thanks
            for the takin of your time

To listen to a cowboy,
            Who's tryin hard to Rhyme!"

© 2005, Tim Kauffroath
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

 

Read more about Tim Kauffroath's poetry here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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