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McCammon, Idaho
About Mike Murray




Of Things Organic

The AARP recruited me,
      Then culled me in a panic;
I took their test, I did my best,
      But they claim I'm not - organic.

I wanted their health insurance,
      For I've had to leave such things to chance;
Cause the premiums on a policy,
      Cost more than the payment on this ranch.

My hips are made of steel posts,
      And power pole insulators;
Dangerous in thunderstorms,
      And they poke holes into my waders.

My lower legs are merely pegs,
      Made of parts from the tractor store;
And a steel plate, that was of late,
      The blade on my lawn mower.

My teeth are mostly porcelain,
      My gums shrank unimpeded;
Where there was hair upon my head,
      It will have to be - re-seeded.

When cataracts clouded my sight,
      Doc had to replace my lenses;
They're made from 100% recycled plastic,
      From wrecked Mercedes Benz's.

I take DeCon to thin my blood,
      And Viagra too...Well that shouldn't come from me;
To find out why all you have to do,
      Is watch the ads on your tv!

My knees are mine, so is my spine,
      As are most things found internal;
But they crack and pop or flip and flop,
      And make a noise - infernal.

From years of sun the facial skin cancer,
      Called for a dramatic plan of surgical action;
And now today I look like a cross,
      Between Phyllis Diller and Michael Jackson.

As long as I can find replacement parts,
      I figure I have a chance
To make it to retirement,
      Then sell my cows and this old ranch.

No, I guess I'm not organic,
      Don't know if I will ever see sixty-five;
But DAMN its great to be fifty-eight,
      And still partially alive!!!!

2005, Mike Murray
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Mike told us: In the mid 1990's I got in a wreck with a colt and broke my hip - the joint degenerated over time and I had a total hip replacement in 2004 - at which time my Grandson asked me if I was still organic, as the saying goes the rest is history. 


The Card

I often think of all the things,
      That make my blood run cold,
Like the scream of a mountain lion,
      Or of die'n a' fore I'm old.

In days gone by there were stampedes,
      And rivers runnin' high and fast,
Or hanging up when the bronc would buck,
      But those days are mostly in the past.

Oh, today there are still dangers,
      When you ride the open range,
Because when you work with a horse and cows,
      There's some things that never change.

There's rattlesnakes and cedar breaks,
      And badger holes that you could step in,
There's an ornery hoss or an ornery boss,
      That both could use some breakin'.

But one thing that's a "real" problem,
      For the cowboy that's still a ridin',
And that's havin the cash to pay for the bash,
      When he comes to town from out of hidin'.

And in these modern times of ours,
      There's a new ever-present danger,
One that wasn't around and couldn't be found,
      Back in the day of the Texas Ranger.

So gather round folks and I'll tell you about
      Something more dangerous than it seems,
It wakes me right up in a cold sweat,
      And interferes with a peaceful nights dreams.

Yes, from observation and experience,
      Here's the most dangerous thing ol'pard,
It's a cowboy in town on a Saturday night,
      When he's packing a credit card.

2005, Mike Murray
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Mike told us: I wrote "The Card" about 20 years ago after I had run into an old gentleman that I had cowboy'd for in the early 1970's. He had always told me that he
paid "just enough."  Just enough to have a good time, not get in to much trouble and still be back at the ranch by Monday morning. He was a little disturbed by all the credit card offers that came through the mail and how easy it was to get one, and how hard it was to keep em paid up. ( I think he was right.) "The Card" is my take on his sage commentary



About Mike Murray:

I live in McCammon, Idaho. I was born and raised in the Judith River country of Central Montana. I attended Montana State University in Bozeman and graduated with a degree in Ag Business. I am a full-time grain merchandiser (for the past 25 years), part-time horse trainer and full-time dreamer and frustrated rancher. I have been writing poetry for over forty years, and being born terminally shy, have only been reciting for the past 15 years or so.



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