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Call Me Tex

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When I was just a teenage lad, and growing up out west I never wore a cowboy hat or fancy leather vests, never put on cowboy boots or western shirts with snaps, never wore tooled leather belts, much less a pair of chaps. To be in style the Ivy League was what one wore to school. A skinny tie and button-down was how you dressed up cool. We wore Weejun penny loafers and tapered chino slacks. The boys all sported flattops, kept up straight with wax. Rock and roll and sock hops, my dance was then the twist. Cotton-eyed Joe and two-step didn't even make the list. Good ol' Willie Nelson could hardly make a sound, 'cause the King and Frank Sinatra were the coolest cats around. But when I joined the service, and moved outside the state, it didn't matter where I went or if I said my name out straight. I thought I must have had an omnipresent hex, 'cause when I was out of Texas, they'd always call me Tex. When I said over yonder, they'd all say “Over... Where?” When I talked about a horny toad, I'd get a funny stare. It didn't matter if my name was Buck or Roy or Rex, 'cause when I was out of Texas, they'd always call me Tex. When they shipped me overseas, I thought that I would die! Couldn't get a Dr. Pepper there, or any Frito pie. When I wanted longneck Lone Stars, all they had was Beck's and all those Europeans would always call me Tex. Any label kind of burned me, so right then I made the call. I'd learn to talk just like those guys, to hide my Texas drawl. I practiced on my diction, with elocution persevered, and soon the sideways looks and grins had all but disappeared. I traveled all around the world, got married overseas. Learned myself a few more tongues and got a few degrees. Now if I talk to British lords or European Czechs, when I masticate the lingo, they never call me Tex. Finally made it home one day, after way too many years. Came back to see old pals and maybe share some beers. I wondered how the touch of time had treated all those lads. To my surprise, those preppy guys had all turned into their dads. Each one wore a cowboy hat and dandy leather vest, some sported a bandana, some with bola ties were dressed. Some shod those M.L. Leddy boots with fancy pull-on straps, each had a set of bootcut jeans and western shirts with snaps. Something then came over me, something that felt right. I heard my voice inside me say "Well boys, ain't y'all a sight!” That educated accent that I'd worked so hard to gain, had evaporated quicker than a light West Texas rain. I guess that you can travel, and learn lots of fancy stuff, but with friends who knew you when, there's no way that you can bluff. They might be polite with you, and humor you no doubt, but you're better off to cut it loose and let it all hang out. They all let out a holler, yelling “Waitress bring the checks! Give 'em to that ugly hombre yonder with the handle Tex.” Now if I were any other place, I'd likely wring their necks, but when I'm home in Texas, then you can call me Tex.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2013




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Date: 7/9/2014 12:14:00 AM
Roy, Congratulation, on having your poem featured on the soup's home page. Always & Forever ~LINDA~
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Date: 2/28/2013 6:03:00 PM
Congrats, Roy. Outstanding write. Well done. Nice going. Ralph
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Date: 2/27/2013 4:50:00 PM
Congratulations Roy :-)
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Date: 2/27/2013 10:49:00 AM
Many congratulations on the top spot Roy xx
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Date: 2/27/2013 7:05:00 AM
I truly enjoyed your rhyme. Congratulation on your win. Connie
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Date: 2/27/2013 4:44:00 AM
wow! as i rhymer myself, i am in awe of the perfect way you've used rhyme in this amazing poem. bravo to you and congratulations on a well-deserved win!
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Date: 2/27/2013 3:23:00 AM
What a fine write, so I guess it's true you can take the boy out of Texas, but not the Texas out of the boy. Love it!
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Date: 2/26/2013 8:38:00 PM
Hello Roy, a few friends on the soup call me TEX... Nice to meet you... your poem was fun and fascinating to read... ha at least you know our ways, ..however I don't know about the cowboy way here in the South. I do love the Frito pie, and DP'. I know the feeling of the Nickname, *another favorite poem* CONGRATULATIONS, with this awesome poem about YOU :-) LINDA
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Date: 2/2/2013 4:47:00 PM
Well Roy I loved it even more and I am going to print this off to show it to my dad... he will get a kick out of it too...lol
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Date: 1/26/2013 6:46:00 PM
Roy; I want to congratulate you on this poem. It is awesome, all the way through. Thanks for sharing this fantastic poem. I'm from Texas too. Lucilla
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Jerden Avatar
Roy Jerden
Date: 1/27/2013 4:09:00 AM
Thanks Lucilla! Where y'all from?
Date: 1/24/2013 8:39:00 PM
I'm commenting after reading the first two stanzas and already I know this is my kind of stuff... now I will continue! As I read on... I've always prided myself on my rhyming skills but you have outdone me my friend! THIS IS A GREAT STORY about how the more things change, the more they stay the same! Yee haw!
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Jerden Avatar
Roy Jerden
Date: 1/25/2013 10:32:00 AM
Thanks, Jack. I like your stuff, too. No offense to the avantgarde guys, but I like rhythmic poetry with formal structure. It's more work, but worth it IMHO.
Date: 1/22/2013 7:58:00 PM
This is sooooo great. I have been on soup three days now and you my friend just made me laugh till I cried, cause no matter where I go across the country people ask me where I'm from and laugh at how I talk, an okie thru and thru ya'll thanks!
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Jerden Avatar
Roy Jerden
Date: 1/24/2013 5:07:00 AM
Hey Donna. I just added two more stanzas to this one. I think it's a better poem now. Tell me what you think. Cheers, Roy
Jones Avatar
Donna Jones
Date: 1/23/2013 12:26:00 PM
Loved em all...especially the drag one... hoe many times did I drag the mile long town I live in in the seventies? And many of the same memories! Drive in..pizza parlor ladies hose rolled down singing at player piano. Great stuff
Jerden Avatar
Roy Jerden
Date: 1/23/2013 3:26:00 AM
Welcome to The Soup, Donna! You'll like it here, I'm sure. An Okie like you might like some of my other work as well. Check out "Keep it Turnin' to The Right" and "Cruising the Drag" for more SW humor and perhaps "La Bejarena" and "Six Man Dance".