101 WAYS TO LOSE A CALF by Linda Nadon


by Linda Nadon

There’s a hundred ways to lose a calf, reckon we’ve all heard that before
But, when it comes to losin’ a calf, I can tell you ‘bout one more

It was calvin’ time, water was runnin’ and the sun was shinin’ bright
I headed out to check the cows, to make sure everything was alright

A little Red Angus cow had calved and she was lookin’ after her little guy
As I walked up, a ripple, in a bull hole behind her, caught my eye

I really couldn’t believe it ‘cause only his nostrils was stickin’ out
I reached in and grabbed a-hold, it was a new born calf, no doubt

I don’t know how long he was in there, I’ve no idea how he’d fallen in
I dragged him over to the little cow and she claimed him, reckon he was her twin

Momma cow was working him over good, I figured he’d soon get up and suck
It was warm and sunny, he’d be dry in no time, I couldn’t believe our luck!

I reckon we was ’bout half done calvin’ these twins would put us up by one
And momma cow definitely wanted them both, we was havin’ a real good run

Didn’t look like they needed my help at all, decided I might as well go
I thought, I’ll let “Mother Nature” do her thing I’ll come back in an hour or so

Ya see, I’ve been known to interfere, perhaps, on occasion, more than I should
But this time, I figured no help was required, things was going too good

When I returned, I couldn’t believe it that calf was stone, cold dead
He had suffocated, his brother had stumbled over and was laying on his head

Now a dozen “woulda, coulda, shoulda’s” went racing thru’ my head that day
And now you’ve heard My story of how we lost a calf the 101th way

© 2016, Linda Nadon
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author’s permission.


Saskatchewan rancher Linda Nadon also sent these photos of twins, and told us, “This is a true story, unfortunately, it doesn’t have a happy ending. It does provide an accurate description of calving on the ranch. As a rancher, you never know when to interfere and when to leave things be. In this situation, I made the wrong call. I guess that’s ranching.

Linda Nadon has a recent CD, North of 54 Degrees.


It is described:

North of 54 is Linda’s debut CD which includes a sample of her own cowboy poetry. Linda and her husband, who she refers to as “my Larry,” raise beef cattle near Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan, Canada (which is located on the 54th parallel). Her poems are depictions of her many, and often humorous, experiences on the ranch. The critters and calamities associated with everyday life on the N7 Ranch provide a never-ending supply of poetry material. The CD also features songs performed by Linda and her children, Lacey and Landon. Her brother and producer, recording artist Rocky Lakner, also added musical accompaniment and her favorite song which he wrote and recorded some years ago. CD’s can be ordered directly from Linda at l.lnadon@hotmail.com for $15.00 pp.

Find Rick Huff’s review here  where he comments, “I don’t recall coming away from hearing a CD by a poet who focuses on family ranching with more of a clear-cut sense of the family than this one provides…”

Find more about Linda Nadon at CowboyPoetry.com.