THE CUTTIN’ CHUTE by Linda Kirkpatrick



by Linda Kirkpatrick

As the cowboy works the cuttin’ gate
There’s a few things he’s gotta know.
The first and foremost of these things
Is what must stay and what must go.

Now take that ole cow over there
The black with mottled face,
Why she ain’t calved in more than a year;
She’s got no business on this place.

So I’ll just cut her to the left
When she hits the cuttin’ gate,
So far of all the cows to go,
She’ll be number eight.

But when it comes to friends I know
And life is kinda in a tight
There is one thing fer darn sure,
I’ll cut you to the right.

© 2002, Linda Kirkpatrick, used with permission
This poem should not be printed or posted without the author’s permission

Ranch-raised in Texas Hill Country, Linda Kirkpatrick is known for her poetry, recitations, writings about regional history, and chuckwagon cooking.

She wrote this poem for her friends Ginger and W. B. Patterson, who, like Linda, are from long-time Texas ranching families.

Linda Kirkpatrick is headed to the 31st annual Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering (February 24-25, 1017). A stellar lineup includes Doris Daley, Pipp Gillette, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Jim Jones, Luke Reed, Gail Steiger, Dale Burson, Mikki Daniel, Kevin Davis, and Randy Rieman. There are special concerts by Trinity Seely and Kristyn Harris and by Red Steagall and Dan Roberts and other performers include Mary Abbott, Apache Adams, Gary Allegretto, Amy Hale Auker, Sally Bates, “Straw” Berry, Mike Blakely, Almeda Bradshaw, Don Cadden, Bob Campbell, Craig Carter, Allan Chapman & Rodeo Kate, John Davis, Doug Figgs, Ray Fitzgerald, Rolf Flake, Ryan Fritz, Jeff Gore, Audrey Hankins, Andy Hedges, Don Hedgpeth, Randy Huston, Chris Issacs, Jill Jones & Three Hands High, Suzi Killman & Cyndi Austin, Linda Kirkpatrick, Daron Little, Deanna McCall, Pat Meade, Chuck Milner, Glenn Moreland, Joel Nelson, Sam Noble, Kay Nowell, Jean Prescott, Gary Prescott, Mike Querner, Heather Watson & Nathan Schmidt, Jay Snider, Caitlyn Taussig, Rod Taylor, Floyd Traynor, Keith Ward, and Jim Wilson.

This year’s Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering poster is by Tyler Crow, the newest and youngest member of the Cowboy Artists of America. (The Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry/ is also pleased to have Tyler Crow art for this year’s Cowboy Poetry Week poster.)

Find more about the Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering on Facebook and at

Find more about Tyler Crow on Facebook,  and at

Find more about Linda Kirkpatrick, including her books and recordings, at,, and find her “Somewhere in the West” column in The Hill Country Herald.


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