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PHIL CRAWFORD
"TUMBLEWEED"
Kansas
About Phil Crawford
Phil Crawford's web site

 

 

 

Montana Slim

He sat tall in the saddle,
While hazing the cattle,
Spring round-up was about to begin.
This rangy ole cowpoke,
Never a cross word he ever spoke,
And his troubles,  he bore with a grin.

He hailed from Montana,
Wore a big red bandana,
And a hat that was mostly all brim.
His jeans were quite faded ,
A shirt that was jaded,
And old boots that were made just for him.

His chaps seen their their best,
 He wore an old calfskin vest,
 And gloves that were nearly worn through.
 But look at that saddle,
 He sits astradle,
 It shines like it did when brand new.

 His horse was is a buckskin,
 But you knew it had good kin;
 Its lines were one of the best best.
 Was bred to chase cattle,
 With a man in the saddle,
 Strong legged and and wide in the chest.

 He could ride with the best,
 And  he  roped with  the rest.
 He tamed a wild stallion or two.
 But, when  it came time,
 For a life more with sublime ,
 He returned to the old Circle U.

There he rode for the brand,
Was the round-up's top hand,
For he knew all the ways of the range.
But as time went on,
The old days were gone.
His Old West was a makin' a change.

 His days are now now numbered,
 His reflexes encumbered,
 His eyes are beginning to dim.
 But if you wanta hear a story,
 Of the Old West in its glory,
 Just ask old Montana Slim.

 If you want a true story
 Of old cowboy glory,
 Just ask old Montana Slim.

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


The Bronc Rider

I was sitting on the top rail,
Watching as the horses milled,
And the cowboys made their choices
'Till, the whole remuda's filled.

Some were solids, some light colored,
Some were paints, and some were roan,
Some I knew would not be ridden,
And the cowboys on them thrown.

I make my livin' ridin' broncos
It's the only life I know.
Yes, it's me up in the saddle
And the bronco down below.

He does his best to stay unridden,
And with a head-toss he begins,
Drops his head down 'tween his fore-legs,
Kicks his rear in to a spin.

Winds his tail up like a windmill,
Then the front end leaves the ground,
Does a snaproll there in mid-air,
A new trick he somewhere found.

Now, I'm the best there is at riding,
And I put on quite a show,
But, if I could find a better job,
I would quit right now and go.

But, I was hired to ride the ponies,
That those cowboys couldn't ride.
Don't know why I keep on doin' it?
I guess it's just my foolish pride.

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

Phil told us: Thinking of days long passed, I was headed toward Valentine, Nebraska, for Old West Days, and there, in the "rough" or "breaks" on the south side of the Niobrara River, was a lone Cowboy rounding up (or trying to) a small  band of horses.  I was reminded of something my grandpa had said, and in his words, "I was a rough stock rider in my younger days." Putting this together with the fact I have a ranch background, the poem came out of past recollections of gatherings and roundups

 

 

Leader Of The Herd

There is snow upon the high peaks
Geese are circling 'round.
The meadow hay is in the stack,
And frost will soon be found.
The cattle on the high range,
Must be driven down,
Before the snow has piled up,
On the ground.

Chorus
Snow upon the high peaks,
Means summer's end is near,
And winter is not waiting,
Long, this year.

So we gather up the horses,
Pack up all our gear;
We must hasten now to round them up,
And get those cows down here.
There will be a few old critters,
Who want to stay behind;
They can hide the darnest places,
Blows your mind.

Chorus

There is one old cow that's missing,
We've looked every where;
The leader of that mountain herd,
We knew she should be there;
But, time is getting shorter,
And we must head on down .
We can see the storm cloud,
Forming, all around.

Chorus

Now upon that snow capped mountain,
Some where 'neath the snow;
Lies the last remains of a grand old girl,
Someone we all did know.
On a meadow or the rimrock,
Or a crevice, far below,
Lies their latest reigning leader,
In the Snow.

2 Chorus
She was a Grand old Monarch,
True leader of the herd,
"Gonna" be hard to replace her,
Mark my word.

Snow upon the high peaks,
Means Winter's almost here;
And, they will pick a new leader,
Before next year.

Oh yes, they will have a new leader,
Come next year.

2006, Phil Crawford
 This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Phil told us: The background for this song comes from time spent in the Big Horn Mountains. in Wyoming.




About Phil Crawford:

I was born, "in a little house on the prairie," during the "Dirty Thirties" in central Nebraska. My first stage appearance was at the age of four. I have been playing guitar since the age of 9. 

Music has always been a part of my life, I and have played and sung in numerous bands since high school days. I do a wide variety of old songs and ballads, gospel, as well as original songs and poems.

I spent my early life on the ranch and later life in ranch related jobs. I have been doing serious writing for about 12 years. I am a member of the Academy of Western Artists.

I have a web site http://www.stfrancisks.com/Tumbleweed.htm

My range has been from Montana to Arizona, mainly east of the Rockies. I now reside in St. Francis, Kansas.

Appearances include:

The "Old West Days" Nebraska Cowboy Poetry Gathering at Valentine (it has become an important stop on my schedule, 1996-2005). This is where I began attending poetry and music gatherings in earnest.

Other events include:

Montana State Poetry Gathering 
Tucson Cowboy Music Gathering, Tucson, Arizona 
Tumbleweed Round-up, St Francis, Kansas 
Ghost Town Poetry Gathering, Rosston, Oklahoma '
Rattlesnakes Round-up, Tribune, Kansas
Celebration on the Plains, Colby, Kansas
Tri-State Thrasher Show, Bird City, Kansas
Barn Again & Buffalo Commons, McCook, Nebraska
Summer Home Coming, Mason City, Nebraska

and numerous local functions such as trail rides, Lion's Club, Music Club, for senior citizens, and so on. 

 


 

 

 

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