Cowboy Poetry and Music and More at the BAR-D Ranch

David Dill, photo courtesy of Mr. Dill

ZD Ranch, Hillsboro, Texas

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


One of

Lariat Laureate Runner Up

First Lariat Laureate Runner Up

Recognized for his poem, Cattle Drive


David Dill was born and raised in Corsicana, Navarro Co., Texas where he began learning his cowboy skills from "Pop" Edens on one of the famous Edens ranches. Mr. Dill is a licensed auctioneer and conducts general and horse auctions (some from horseback).  He has done so much and performed so many places and won so many awards that there is more than can be said about Mr. Dill in a few paragraphs, so mosey over to his own cowboy poetry web site where you can see plenty great photos, read his resume, read his and other folks' poetry, and buy some of his hand tied "cowboy" halters.  


Cattle Drive

Head em  up!!!
Move ‘em out!!
A cowboy can’t wait,
To hear that shout.

Them steers in the trap,
They need to go home.
No more on the ZD
Range will they roam.

They ate the lush grass
And gained lots of weight.
But now it’s time
To walk out the gate.

Back to the F RANCH
There’s oat grazin’ for feed.
For alfalfa and cubes,
There’s simply no need.

Them steers are healthy.
They’ve had all their shots.
There’s short ones and tall ones,
And of course a few knots.

They’ll walk the four miles.
Just too many to haul.
And besides it’s fun,
Bein’ cowboys and all.

They wear the F brand
On their right side.
That a six in iron
Burned into their hyde.

It's surely a brand
That ain’t gonna’ fade.
I just hope Kerry’s buyers
Don’t think it’s their grade.

David J. Dill, December 1998
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Cattle Drive, copyright David Dill



I'm just a Texas cowboy,
I've been one all my life.
I can ride and rope and wrangle,
I can cook and deal with strife.

I live in the Heart of Texas,
Where the prairie rolls, the grass is green.
But I've cowboyed from there to the Van Horn,
And all places in between.

I followed 250 longhorns
When they crossed the River Red.
They ran just south of Terral,
But we didn't loose a head.

I drove some steers right down the street
In El Paso one Sunday morn.
There were cameras and directors
And a TV spot was born.

I've punched cows on Mustang Island,
A barge took us to our work.
Ol' Toddy Lee and all them Winn's are rich,
But not one acts much like a jerk.

I've not yet seen Montana,
Or Colorado more than thrice.
I'm here a ridin' and a Wranglin'
But I'm leavin' if there's ice.

There rockies are a good place
To spend a month or two.
I'm sure tickled just to be here
And mighty proud to ride with YOU!

David J. Dill, July, 1997
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.



John Payne

David Dill,  John Payne photo

I went to the rodeo,
The other night.
What I saw was incredible,
A wondrous sight

A long tall cowboy
Drove into the ring.
He didn't ride bulls,
And he sure couldn’t sing.

What he did was ride
A good Dunn hoss.
Herded four wild mustangs,
And showed 'em who's boss.

He cracked a long bull whip,
And made it really pop.
Then had all them mustangs
Climb to the top.

Of his long gooseneck trailer
Hitched to his truck.
They just stood there,
Now sun of a buck.

Then a longhorned stag
He too made go up.
That is him an old dog
And a spotted pup.

Then him and ol' Joker
Went up there too.
Now there's six critters and John,
Entertainin' me and you.

On top of a trailer,
Up in the sky.
I think I could do that.
But I ain't gonna try!

When John made
All them critters come down.
He went up again,
And spun ol' Joker around.

He stayed up there
As the truck and trailer drove out,
The croud was a'standin'
And givin' a shout.

Now I think I could do that
Without causing no harm
But John Payne's done done it.
And he's got no right arm.

David J. Dill, October 1996
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.


Gray Quarter Horses

I like gray Quarter Horses,
They’re the best for me to ride.
I don’t care for bays or sorrels,
Or them with spots upon their hide.

The gray ones they are thrifty,
And most of them are stout.
My ol’ Palomino gelding walks,
Like he’s sufferin’ with the gout.

A lady told me once, “I like your App.”
“Just pretty as can be.”
“I had one like he once”
I says “You have my sympathy”

An Arab, he can carry you
Till all his ribs are showin’
But my good gray quarter horse
Will take me where I’m goin’.

I love them grays: Can’t help it.
It’s just the way I’m made.
For me a good gray Quarter Horse
Puts all others in the shade.

1995, David J. Dill
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

The End

Of life and death,
I've been thinkin' a lot.
But a final decision
I've made not.

'Bout the final disposition
Of this frail human form
That I have enjoyed
since the day I was born.

My pals have a plan
That appeals to me.
The logic is brilliant,
As you will see.

David Wylie's gonna skin me,
Upon my death.
And take my hide to Rick Pinner
And wait with bated breath.

For Rick to tan me
In that stinkin' stuff.
Then remove my hyde
When he's waited long enough.

Then color my hyde
In red, blue or pink.
And take me to Glen Wylie,
When I no longer stink..

Then Glen's gonna pad saddles
For cowgirl folk.
And you can believe it or not,
For it ain't no joke.

'Cause I still want to be here,
As all eternity passes.
Between fast Quarterhorses
And cowgirl . . .  . . . . . Wranglers!

 1996, David J. Dill
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Yes folks, dependin' on the audience, that poem sometimes has a different endin'.


Tom Z. Reeves

He sees the world
From an A fork tree.
Approved by the association,
Not for you and me.

An ol' bronk saddle,
Custom built for the trade.
Made for bad buckers,
Not a parade.

He sits up there
Like a king on a throne.
Buckin' rein in one hand,
He could talk on the phone.

At the end of July,
He's top of the list.
If that Aussie catches up,
I'll surely be pissed.

'Cause he's a genuine cowboy
And a gentleman too.
He'll shake your hand
And visit with you.

If your lady is with you,
It's most certain that,
She'll get from Tom
A tip of his hat.

Born in South Dakota
Out from Eagle Butte.
He'll ride any bronk
They'll put in a chute.

Cowboy Christmas is over.
The season's half done.
So far it's been
A mighty fine run.

I just bought my tickets
For the NFR.
They're sittin' there,
In the top dresser drawer.

The plane ticket is ordered.
On that fine plastic card.
I'm goin' to Vegas
And root for my pard.

I know he can ride
Any horses they buck.
But I just got to be there,
And wish him GOOD LUCK!!!!!

2001, David J. Dill
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

David Dill wrote:  

In 2001 at the Texas Circuit Finals in Waco, Texas my son, grandson and I all met Tom Reeves in the parking lot before the rodeo.  I introduced myself to him and then introduced him to my spawn as the most famous bronc rider in the world.  He was modest, gracious and happy to give us some of his time. He went on to make a really nice ride in the performance that we saw and of course won the Texas Circuit as he has done many times before.

This chance meeting on the parking lot impressed me so that I followed his progress through the spring and summer and finally was so hooked on the guy that I decided to go to the NFR just to see if he was going to be able to FINALLY win the world championship that had eluded him the previous 17 years.  As soon as I got my plans made, I wrote this poem.

The performance I attended was round 5 and that is the only round that ended with him being ahead in the world standings.  At the end of round 10 when Hadley Baret was interviewing Tom on TV, Tom was so emotional that he could
barely talk and my eyes were so full of tears that I could hardly see.

To put the final crown on this poem, I was presenting the Christmas Program to the Henderson County Peace Officer's Assn. over in Athens, Texas and the first time I ever read this poem publicly and it got a standing ovation.


The Devil's Tale

You've heard the tale 'bout Buster Jiggs & Sandy Bob,
And what they done to the devil that day?
Well, I was there and seen it all.
It didn't happen just like they say.

I ain't sayn' the're stritchin' the truth,
Or lyin' just a might.
They admitted theirselves in them Sierre Petes,
That they was shore more than tight.

Ol' Sandy Bob did punch a hole in his rope,
After his third loop hit the ground.
And Buster Jiggs, the reatta man, caught the devil's heels.
But he tried four times before his dally was sound.

He caught his thumb on one try,
And his sleave on another.
After he done it right he said somethin'
"Bout his horses poor mother.

As Sandy Bob was a'buildin' the fire.
To get his runnin' iron hot.
He tied his horse to that black jack oak,
But he forgot to make a knot.

His horse pulled back and spooked.
And stepped on Buster Jiggs' toe.
Sandy Bob was a throwin' up
And he missed most of the show.

They was a sharpinen their cuttin' knives,
With which to mark up the Devil's ears,
When a Norther blowed in so fierce,
The Devil began sheddin' tears.

They did tip his horns with their dehornin' saw.
But there weren't no knots in no tail.
The wailing that was heard that fall,
Wasn't the devil at all.
It was them Cowboys goin to jail.

1996, David J. Dill
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

This poem refers to Gail I. Gardner's classic poem, The Sierry Petes (or Tying the Knots in the Devil's Tail)

Tandy Freeman, M.D.

The cowboy life
Is mine every day.
Not so much as a choice,
It’s in my DNA.

Cowboys, because of their lives,
Have some special needs.
Medical attention for themselves,
Not so much for their steeds.

A screwed up tendon
A torn rotator cuff,
Made my cowboy life
Just simply too tough.

My movements were limited.
The pain beyond measure.
I needed a good Doctor
More than cows, horses and treasure.

In the Cowboy Nation
My Doctor of choice
Is Dr. Tandy Freeman,
With his calm confidant voice.

He’s an Orthopedic Surgeon,
Sport’s injury his game.
He fixes broken cowboys
From California to Maine.

He’s fixed most world champions,
As well as nobodies like me.
But in his operating room
There’s no gold buckles to see.

Just cowboys in need
Of his world class skills.
Whether their specialty is ranchin’
Or givin’ PBR fans thrills.

Dr. Tandy fixes cowboys
With bruised, broken limb.
And the cowboys go back to ranchin’
Or the arena where they win.

2009, David J. Dill
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.


I asked my wife to drive my Dodge Diesel pickup late last summer while I sat on the tailgate calling the cows to change pastures. It was a spur-of-the-moment decision as I had found all the cows on the move with all the calves standing. I told her to put the truck in 1st (grandma) gear and just let off the clutch and NOT do anything else other than steer the truck and to take it out of gear when I hollered at her. As wives tend to do, she put the truck in 3rd gear and let off the truck and proceeded to do otherwise as I had asked. THEN, she hit a fire ant mound. 

With that change that big diesel engine opened the governor and the pickup speeded up. By the time the back wheel got to the fire ant mound it had gained enough speed that I was propelled into the air, coming to land on my right shoulder AND my nose. I already had an appointment with the family practice doctor the next day and he examined me and said "Give it a couple of weeks and if the pain isn't gone you will have to have a MRI."  When the "couple of weeks" expired the pain had gotten worse so I called the family practice doctor only to find he was on vacation. In my desperation, I simply called Dr. Freeman's office directly to see if he would see me without a referral. He did and I was scheduled for surgery. The rest of the story is in the poem.



You can read David Dill's Jefferson's Christmas posted 
with the 2002 Holiday poem collection.



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