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

Mesa, Arizona
About J. Carl Brooksby






Do ya remember jest how blue ya felt
The first time ya left yer mom,
An' went away ta Boy Scout  camp
A hundred miles from home?

Or went away ta college
Residin in a dorm,
An' ya missed yer mom an' daddy
An' yer little sweetheart's charm?
An' ya felt so blue an' lonesome
That ya cried yerself ta sleep.
Well, you don't know what lonesome is
If you aint herded sheep.
Campin' out all by yerself
No human bein' in thirty miles
With a thousand onery woolies;
That sure don't make ya smile.
Jest you, yer dog an' them woolies
Out in the desert dry,
An ya think of yer friends a dancin'
Beneath the starlit sky.
An' yer little gal's a dancing close
Ta that dude from out a town,
An' ya haven't bathed fer nigh two weeks;
She wouldn't want you around.
Ya see the tumble weeds roll by
A blowin' in the dust;
You'd like a drink of water,
But yer canteen's full o' rust
Or ya hear the wild coyote cry
When yer tryin' to go ta sleep.
No, you don't know what lonesome is,
Cause you ain't herded sheep.

2006, J. Carl Brooksby
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.


Gatherin' Desert Shrimp

Oft' times my mind will wander,
Though I am old and gimp,
Back to those days back yonder,
And gatherin' desert shrimp.

Now, kids 'n ladies, turn around,
And quickly walk away.
There's sex an' violence herein;
So, what more need I say?

You've heard of mountain oysters
And the source from whence they come;
Well, the shrimp have a similar background,
But they're smaller than your thumb.

Each spring, the little lambies
Are taken from their ma's
And to make the scene more tragic,
They don't even know their pa's.

A kid will catch them one by one,
To the lambs, it don't make sense,
When he grabs a'holt of all four laigs
An' sets 'em on the fence.

If they only knew, that man they face,
With a sharpened knife,
Holds their future in his hands:
The keys to death an' life.

First thing he does is notch their ears
An' then he bobs their tail.
That ends it, if the lamb's a she:
God help him if he's male.

The "he" lamb has a hairy bag
That's cut off at the tip.
Exposin' two small objects;
From yer fingers, they would slip.

The one sure way to git 'em, is
To put yer nose down in their wool,
Then grasp 'em firmly 'twixt yer teeth
An' give a gentle pull.

Then the kid'll drop him o'er the fence,
An' he takes off with a limp.
He's become the organ donor
Of two fine desert shrimp.

Meanwhile, ya have the slippery things
A dangling from yer lips.
'Tis crucial not ta swaller now,
Or down yer throat they'll slip.

Ya slowly turn yer head around
An' spit 'em in the pan;
Y'can hardly wait fer supper,
If you are half a man.

Y' fry 'em well in bacon grease
An' add terbasko sauce.
To think of somethin' tastier,
I'm completely at a loss.

Don't seek 'em in a butcher shop,
Or in the grocery store.
Y'll have to go an' gather 'em
As in the days of yore.

2006, J. Carl Brooksby
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

About J. Carl Brooksby:

In 2006, J. Carl Brooksby told us:

I was born in 1923 in the small town of Fredonia, Arizona, a town of about 300 residents but still, the largest town on the "Arizona Strip," that portion of Arizona that lies north of the Grand Canyon.  My father and two of his brothers owned about 7,000 head of sheep.  As a consequence, I was out at the sheep herd at a very young age and was herding with my 12 year old brother when I was 10 years old.  We would stay by ourselves in a sheep wagon.  By the time I was twelve, I was herding all by myself, and I really got my share of lonesome. That was what inspired me to go to college and become more than a sheep herder.

After spending about three years in the Navy in WWII, I finished college and was a CPA for 50 years. I have been retired for 16 years, and the poetry I write is all based on true experiences, mostly related to my health. 



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