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RICH ROACH
Niagara Falls, Canada

 

Feastin' Time!

When day is done and cowboys make
Their way inside saloons to rake
Ten spits of sizzlin' sirloin steak
Into their ready gobs - Lord's sake,
Be mindful not to interfere,
Or dare approach 'em from the rear!

For when they's hungry, all who care
For livin' better just beware;
For eatin' cowboys scare the willies
Outta Miss Lynettes and Lillys:
No, no one's safe when they be chompin',
Mind where your loose feet be rompin'!

There's tales, my friends, would chill your bones,
About the Reveren' Thomas Jones,
The day he called their eatin' habits
Sinful, like them filthy rabbits -
All the townsfolk gathered round
To see the Reveren's bones hit ground.

More grisly yet, there was a Tex
Who local gals called Righteous Rex.
One evenin' while the cowboys ate,
Good Tex left Gideons on each plate;
And shouted, "Tis a sin to glut!"
Before the bullet hit his gut.

Then one last story, worst of all,
Was when ol' Omar's bestest doll
Was walkin' past a face-full fest,
And someone her white-laced dress messed:
A food fight? No, a hurricane
Might best describe it right as rain.

The steak was flyin' through the air,
And loads of taters everywhere,
And when the tempest settled down,
Why, ten men less were in that town -
And Omar's gal?  Her dress was ruined -
Lord, it was royally salloo-ined!

So next time you sees cowboys grazin',
Wolfish-like, with every face in,
Just walk the other way, my friend,
Unless you'd like to greet your end
Real quick! For they don't like folk messin'
With 'em when they's steak addressin'.

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

 

Gus 'n Me

Yer grandpop's told you stories, sure,
There dandlin' on his knee,
But ain't no tale to make 'em shout
Like my pal Gus 'n me.
 
You see, ol' Gus was full of pride
And ridin' him was hard,
Some fifty men had tried before
To bring down Gus's guard,
 
But Gus would kick and thrash and pull
Them clear around the pen,
Then shoo them off his shoulders like
They's blue-tail flies, not men.
 
They said no man could ride 'im long -
Five seconds was the most.
Well, that was 'fore I came to town,
But I ain't one to boast.
 
See, when I first met Gus, I knew
I'd ride him like no other.
I tell you, folks, 'twas like ol' Gus
Was some lost, little brother,
 
Cause when I leapt onto his back,
Him kicking wild and mad,
He rode ME round as if I was
The friend he never had.
 
The cowpokes there they looked real hard,
And others strained to see,
For none of them had ever seen
The likes of Gus 'n me.
 
They gawked and called, they whooped and bawled,
But Gus he didn't care,
He took me round that big 'ol pen
As if they wasn't there.
 
Young boys and girls were standing on
The fence-posts far and wide,
Their jaws all hanging to their knees,
You'd think somebody'd died.
 
No, no one could believe it (Lord,
It made their heads spin round!)
To see me sitting on his back,
Like some new king just crowned.
 
We strutted round and round that pen
As proud as proud could be,
Two better pardners never met
Like good ol' Gus 'n me.
 
2001, Rich Roach 
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

 

Homeward

I whistled low across the plain
as evenin' fell, and felt no pain;
my mind was filled with such sweet sights
as warm a cowboy's heart most nights:

a waiting wife for me at home,
my children, Jo-Jo and Jerome,
oh, I could see them clear as day
beneath that fading sky of grey.
 
But when I reached the hitchin' post,
what thrashed about my mind the most
was why I heard no sound at all
beyond the hill that stood too tall
 
for me to see if all was well.
I ran and ran as if from Hell --
then as the ranch came into view,
and heartbeats bruised my poor ribs blue,
 
I heard an angel's voice shout, "Pa!"
and smiled the width of Arkansas.

2004, Rich Roach
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

 



Read Rich Roach's A Cowboy Christmas posted with Holiday 2004 poems

 

 

 

 

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