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Toni Chisamore with Princess and her filly Destiny

 

TONI CHISAMORE
Vacaville, California
About Toni Chisamore

 

 

Hip 202

You bought yourself a nice'un
Is what the cowboy said.
Don't matter 'bout his color
He's got a real good head.

Now cowboys have opinions
And there ain't no holdin' back.
They'll tell you what they're thinkin'
Damn sure, matter of fact.

This old boy was grizzled
I could tell he'd been around.
He'd just come West from Billings
He was San Francisco bound.

A slant-load crammed with horseflesh
And a thermos filled with hooch,
He'd driven through the night
Just him and a spotted pooch.

As he shook my hand, he told me
The story of the trip.
He sang the praises of my colt
About the Sorrel he let 'er rip.

That son of a gun with his racket and strife
Had the other horses upset.
But the little guy that I did buy
Hadn't even broke a sweat.

I guess that wild-eyed Cayuse
Now calmly munchin' hay
Had kicked and pawed, and stomped and hawed
All through the night and day.

Then while we was talkin' the trailer started rockin'
The red horse raisin' a fuss.
In jumped the cowboy a yellin' and screamin'
That wrangler could sure enough cuss.

"Damn pampered nags are trouble," he said
As he whipped off his hat and wiped his brow.
"They don't make horses like they used to."
Now ain't that just true somehow?

Well muttering still the cowboy emerged
With my colt on the end of his rope.
And my face must've fell cause that horse looked like hell
His white color muddied to taupe.

What I'm tellin' you now you may not believe,
But I swear I'm not tellin' a lie
The sight of that colt steppin' off'a that ramp
Near about made me cry.

The critter I watched calmly exit that rig
Was one that few Cowmen would keep.
Straight in the shoulder, and short in the back he
Looked not like a horse but a sheep.

Hip 202.  He was all curly hair,
Dirty white and growing in tufts.
But gentle blue eyes, soft as a doe,
Gazed out from under the fluff.

He took me in an if a horse could grin
He'd been wearin' a smile on his face.
Tugged on the rope and snatched bites of grass
Happily contented to graze.

Now I must have had a look of dismay
That twisted that ole boy's heart.
'Cause he told me he'd seen more than a few,
An knowin' good horseflesh is an art

That cowboy looked me straight in the eye
"Don't you worry girl," he said.
This 'uns a good'n, I'm tellin' you true
I can always tell by the head.

2003, Toni Chisamore
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

We asked Toni how she came to write this poem, and she told us: "It is a story about the arrival of a colt (Montana) that I bought at auction by proxy bid.  I had not seen the colt prior to bidding except for a photo taken shortly after birth. When he arrived at my ranch he was six months old and quite a surprise. There is a happy ending to the story, though.  He turned out to be both the best looking and best minded horse in my string."

Toni shared a few pictures of Montana:

 


Montana's "baby" picture

 


The auction number on his rump-hip 202



Montana today

 

About Toni Chisamore:

I am a freelance writer and a horsewoman.

Yes, I can ride.  In fact, I guess you could say I was a cowgirl before cowgirls were cool.  Actually, I like to think of myself as a "cowboy girl," the term used for girl bronc riders in the early 1900's.  No, I don't ride broncs.  Never did.  Not on purpose anyhow.  Been on a few horses that tried to teach me, though.

Horses have always been a part of my life.  As soon as I learned to read, I started reading books about horses.  I was the only little girl on my block that subscribed to The Western Horseman (read it from cover to cover).

Got my first horse at ten; trained my first horse at twelve; was running barrels by fourteen.  Did a lot of gymkhana and trail riding as a teen. Rode some WPRQ Rodeo events in my twenties.  Tried Western Pleasure (too slow), jumping (fun, especially open jumping which was a speed event), and as you've probably figured out, have not been without a horse since.

 

 

 

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