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

About T.K. Galarneau




A flat brimmed hat and a fancy wild rag
They’re the things that put on the tag
Of a cowboy found out Nevada way
In the Great Basin is where he stays
Tall boots and Armitas cover his legs
His work’s in demand, he never begs.

Spurs that shine, fancy bits and romals
Some work in mecates and bosals as well
A man and his horse; together they’re strong
With a rawhide riata that’s sixty foot long
Just look at his saddle, the toolin’s so neat
With a Wade saddle tree, his rig is complete.

If you’re a thinkin’ this man’s just about show
Ask anyone who’s still in the know
They’ll tell you for sure a real buckaroo
Takes pride in his tack and he will outdo
A Texas puncher who ties hard and fast
When throwin’ a big loop he’s unsurpassed.

He studies the cavvy to pick out his string,
Looks for the marks; which one should he bring
Smooth for the snaffle, one for the two rein,
And two for a bridle, it shows in the mane
He chooses his six or might be needs eight
Depends on the circle that he must make.

He’ll brand and doctor, but not fix a fence
Jobs done on horseback make really good sense
He sure ain’t lazy, but a fence drives him crazy
'Bout buildin’ the thing he's a little bit hazy.
He remembers a time, the range was large
It’s not up to him; he’s not in charge.

You’ll find him alone in deserts up high
Or in valleys low with grass and blue sky
He works all day long from dawn until dark
Checkin’ the cattle to make sure they’re marked
He’s got a keen eye, he’s lookin’ right smart
He’s checkin’ the brands that tells them apart

There’s a sayin’ that says ‘bout old buckaroos
A legend that’s old over time it just grew
We’d like ‘em to stay ‘til their dying day
What we want don’t matter; we don’t have no say
It’s probably best if we’d kneel down and pray
So buckaroos won’t die, they’ll just ride away.
© 2013, T.K. Galarneau, from A Cowboy Tradition: Poems from the Heart
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's  permission.



A Little Cowboy Wisdom Never Hurts

A good cowboy knows on whom to rely
His horse and his dog he keeps them nearby.
He’ll have his job so well thought out,
But if there’s any doubt, his horse figures it out.

The chores on the range are varied it’s true
A really good cow hand will know what to do.
Sometimes those bovines have places to hide
And if your horse won’t go there, neither should you.

A good buckaroo can handle most horses
He uses his head but he never forces
When all of the things he’s learned are applied
He climbs in the saddle; he’s ready to ride.

A cow hand’s horse is his partner and friend
None of the work would get done in the end
Without his pony it’s a cowboy’s remorse 
So do the job right or get off the horse.

Treat your horse right, don’t run him to ground
Without his cow horse a hand’s often found
Just a hair’s breath from a fool’s fall
And a man left afoot is no man at all.

The fanciest outfit you’ll ever find
Ain’t nothin so keep this in mind
If a hand is prone to all kinds of abuses
The outfit is never better than its horses

A cowboy’s life was the same each day
He worked pretty hard, didn’t have much to say
You don’t understand; there’s reasons for such
To talk low and slow and don’t say too much.

There’s a code for which we all strive
A way of life; it will always survive
One simple thought nothing too grand
If you work for the man, you ride for his brand.

And speakin’ of that, a man with some sand
Will stand his ground and lend a helpin’ hand
When the trail gets rough and things come undone
Remember every trail’s got some puddles son.

A cowboy’s taught from cradle to grave
There’s a right and a wrong way to behave
A man is judged not on the things he can buy
Success is the hole he leaves when he dies.

And when a cowboy’s days are done
He finally rides toward the sun
Real cowboys never run
They just simply ride away…

© 2014, T.K. Galarneau
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's  permission.



    About T. K. Galarneau:
provided 2013

I moved to the San Francisco Bay Area from Idaho nearly 13 years ago. By profession I am a 9th & 10th grade English teacher. When I'm not working, I spend as much time as I can with my horses. I enjoy reined cow horses, cutting, and reining.

My early upbringing in Idaho and studying the vaquero tradition in California are the impetus for my poems, which tell the story of ordinary people who spent their lives living and working on the land. Some of the characters are fictional, but could have easily existed in a time long-since passed. Most are based on real people from my youth. Many are family who have passed on and left their stories in my care.

A Cowboy Tradition: Poems from the Heart

Find order information and more here.



 What's New | Poems | Search

 Features | Events  

The BAR-D Roundup | Cowboy Poetry Week

Poetry Submissions 

Subscribe | Newsletter | Contact Us

  Join Us!


Authors retain copyright to their work; obtain an author's
permission before using a poem in any form. is a project of the Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry, Inc., a Federal and California tax-exempt non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization.  

Site copyright information