Beneath dotted stars with soft campfire
as ally, lone cowboy’s pondering meanders
through the sand dunes and night-saloons
thumb marked by his blazed rides for
pistol quests and fist thugs, as rowdy duels
and women’s sighs so adored climb
unto a red of greeting sunset.
Recalling those dusty trails--pungent and bold--
he descends like a magic bat from nowhere
riddling his foes way down the desert floor.
Many at times, the sawdust boots
reeked from the heat of bandits’ glare
as if to pierce his chest one hell of a shot
with tassels flowing high unto smoky air.
Edifying as he seems, beneath dotted stars,
a lone cowboy is simply this: a tender wind
mild as his strumming guitar
calling for prairies’ honeyed life while a tough
leather vest hides his simple, warm nobleness.
Howdy Pard Contest of Shadow Hamilton
Tears - Are As Old
… As East Of Eden
Pain - Is As Old
… As East Of Eden
Woes - Are As Old
… As East Of Eden …
That’s Why The Cowboy … Rides West
And Disappears, Into The Flaming Sunsets … ( Gen. 3: 23, 24 )
There’s a legacy inside him,
As he sits upon his steed;
His heart is filled with honesty,
Not perjury or greed;
He rides the same old range,
That his father rode before;
And it’s been that way for forever,
A hundred years or more;
Pushin’ cattle, brandin’ calves,
That is a cowboy’s life;
Someday he may settle down,
And make some girl his wife;
He’s spent so many lonely nights,
Sleeping under the stars,
He hasn’t got a tattoo,
What he has are battle scars;
There’s a rip across his stomach,
From a rangy longhorn steer;
And even though it hurt like hell,
He never shed a tear;
He always outs on a brave face,
Emotions locked inside;
And for his cowboy heritage,
He feels only pride.
IF YOUR VERY VERY QUIET
AND VERY VERY STILL
YOU CAN HEAR HIM TALKING
AND KNOW THAT HE IS REAL
WHISPERING THROUGH THE TREES
AND THE SONGS OF THE BIRDS
CHIRPING OF THE CRICKETS
MOVEMENT OF THE HERD
THE RUSTLING OF GRASS
SOFTLY PUSHED ASIDE
BY FEET STEPPING QUIETLY
PAUSING WHILE IN STRIDE
A MARE SOFTLY COAXING
A PRECIOUS NEWBORN FOAL
THE CREATION OF LIFE
WARMS YOU TO YOUR SOUL
IF YOU LISTEN YOU CAN HEAR
YOUR HEART SLOWLY BEATING
COUNTING OUT THE SECONDS
OF YOUR SHORT LIFE FLEETING
JUST CLOSE YOUR EYES AND LISTEN
TO ALL THE THINGS YOU MISS
WORRYING ABOUT DAY TO DAY
TOO LONG IS YOUR LIST
LISTEN TO WHAT IS IMPORTANT
LIFE GOES ON ALL AROUND
THINK NOW WHAT YOU’RE HEARING
AND THE TREASURES YOU FOUND
SO IF YOU’RE VERY VERY QUIET
AND VERY VERY STILL
YOU’LL KNOW WHO IS TALKING
AND KNOW THAT GOD IS REAL
WHEN THE DOGWOOD IS IN BLOOM AND THE RANGE HAS TURNED TO GREEN
I WILL RIDE YOUR WAY AGAIN LIKE THE HAPPY VISION IN YOUR DREAM.
WITH THE SUN SHINING ON MY BACK ON THE TRAIL LEADING TO YOUR DOOR
I WILL COME BACK TO YOU ALWAYS IN YOUR HAPPY MEMORIES AS BEFORE.
YOU REMEMBER HOW I WORE MY HAT? SLIGHTLY TILTED TO THE SIDE?
AND HOW I ALWAYS SAT TALL IN THE SADDLE WHENEVER I WOULD RIDE?
I COULD SEE YOU WAITING THERE AND I WOULD SIT TALLER THAN A KING
MY PRIDE WOULD SWELL AND I HAD TO SMILE KNOWING YOU WORE MY RING.
WE SWAM IN THAT LITTLE BLUE HOLE BENEATH THE COTTONWOOD TREES
THEN LAY ON A BLANKET STARING AT THE STARS IN LOVE YOU AND ME.
THE HOURS WOULD PASS LIKE MINUTES AS YOU LAY THERE IN MY ARMS
I THANK GOD EACH AND EVERY DAY YOU GRACED ME WITH YOUR CHARMS.
WE TOOK LONG WALKS HAND IN HAND THROUGH THE FIELDS OF WILD FLOWERS
CHASING COTTONTAIL RABBITS AND RED SQUIRRELS TO THEIR HIGH TOWERS.
WE PUT UP THE CORN IN THE SUMMER AND GATHERED PECANS IN THE FALL
LIFE WITH YOU MY DARLING WAS WONDERFUL AS I ALWAYS WILL RECALL
DON’T WEEP FOR ME BUT REMEMBER THE GOOD TIMES THAT WE HAD TOGETHER
AND RECALL WHEN WE WALKED HAND IN HAND IT WAS ALWAYS FINE WEATHER
SO PUT ON MY COAT AND SIT ON THE PORCH AND CLOSE YOUR PRETTY EYES
I’LL COME RIDING TO YOU WHENEVER YOU WISH JUST WATCH OVER THE RISE.
May you gather kin ‘round campfires
And give thanks to God on high—
May you feast and relish friendships
Before that round-up in the sky.
In that grey, quiet space between night & dawn
While the coyote sings a good morning song
A cowboy rides up to a spot high on the hill
to reflect on his blessings & the bounty of good will
For a hot cup of coffee & warm meals to eat
For the shade of a broad brim hat & the sturdy boots on his feet
For the comfort in the silence just before the rooster crows
Just why he was chosen to be this lucky, only the Creator knows
For this good horse between his knees, sure & steady at a lope
for those fat & sassy cattle & true aim when he ropes
For all his compadres just now stirring for the day
Each one of them in your likeness, so the preachers say
For living each & every day as Cowboy as he can
For unexpected kindness & the basic goodness of a man
The keening of the hawk draws his gaze up toward the sky
And he says another prayer for those who ride in the By & By
Yes, there are surely enough reasons to grump, cuss or shout
But taking stock of all your blessings is what that first morning cup is all about
So thank you once again sir, for giving us this life
May you ride along beside us, in good times & in strife
Today I buried ol' Travis,
a better dog you never seen,
intelligent, strong, an' good natured
with eyes that were wary and keen.
It hurt me to lay him to rest now,
an' I know I'm gonna shed tears,
but I can't fault God for the takin'
'cause I shared with that dog sixteen years.
I remember when I first saw Travis,
just a little fur ball at the time,
we both felt an instant connection,
an' I knew that cowdog would be mine.
I couldn't resist his free spirit,
golden eyes that were so fulla care,
nor could I forsee his devotion,
or all the good times we would share.
From the very first trip to our homestead,
my pickup he claimed as his own,
whenever that truck left our acres,
he was goin' wherever it roamed.
As a watch dog there never was better,
no coyote would dare cross this land,
he'd be out there barkin' an' chasin',
an' run off the whole yippin' band.
An' when Mr. Cougar come callin',
ol' Travis would raise such a fuss,
he knew not to nab the mean bugger,
but would bark till it woke both of us.
Ranch hands have got an' ol' sayin'
'bout workin' as hard as a dog,
an' I can sure vouch for ol' Travis,
he could herd cattle even in fog.
His muzzle was startin' to turn gray,
an' he had quite a limp t'ward the end,
but whenever I'd head out to do chores,
I could count on some help from my friend.
Now, I ain't alone in my grievin',
the wife took Trav's death pretty hard,
he was also her life long companion,
an' would follow her out in the yard.
I know that we're both gonna miss him,
this place'll seem empty an bare,
I'll miss fillin' his bowl in the kitchen,
an' him sleepin' right next to my chair.
My throat's just plum' fulla the achin',
an' I'll bust out in tears anytime,
but I ain't ashamed a my feelin's,
'cause most dogs, well, they ain't worth a dime.
But Travis was just somethin' special,
best cowdog I ever did see,
an' wherever God sends dogs when passin',
that's the place where I wanna be.
I do not know?
So strong and self assured
He rides alone always wanting more
Never satisfied with what's between those fences
His spirit will wake up your wildest senses
By the cross and thorns that is emblazoned on his arm
His substance runs deeper than his cowboy charm
A tame Christian man with a spirit wild
A man of God, he is your child
His reckless nature will never subside
Yet humble he still has his foolish pride
His heart is bigger than the tallest mountain high
And you feel weak when you look into his eyes
His hands so rough yet so soft to touch
For him no ride is ever too much
He welcomes the mystery that comes in the night
A lover at heart born ready to fight
The complexity of this cowboy man
Every woman dreams with him she would stand
Alone, looking at the midnight moon
In her dreams, she whispers...sometime soon
Grew up a country bumpkin,
known the freedom that entails,
worked hard to make a livin',
walked down some dusty trails.
Ma an' Pa was hard on me,
said it was for my good,
but I lit out real early
just to prove to them I could.
Did some drinkin' in my early days,
an' had a wife or two,
but now I just got my ol' horse
an' a ornery dog named Blue.
I've lived the life I wanted
an' done most ever'thing,
have few regrets or heartaches
so I really can't complain.
The sky's my roof above me,
a campfire keeps me warm,
my bed is straw an' saddlebags,
an' bath, a country storm.
Drink water from the rivers clear
that fill from creek an' stream,
eat jerky, hard-tac biscuits,
an' drink coffee without cream.
Ain't no call for cussin'
'cause no one's 'round to hear,
my temper done got simmered
an' replaced with dad-blame fear.
My hair is gettin' thin now,
bones creak more ever'day,
but I can still punch cattle,
brand them doogies, an' buck hay.
If I should die tomorrow,
I'll be glad to meet that train
for God's seen fit in all His grace
to let me have the reins.
I'll ride them clouds in Heaven,
an' sleep in if I please,
I'll praise the Lord before me
as I get down on my knees.
All my troubles will be over,
won't even mind the rain,
'cause God'll keep me sheltered
from all this earthly pain.
So, let me never be forgettin'
how grand a life I've had
'cause I've loved ever' minute,
an' it sure ain't been that bad.