Cowboy Poetry Week: April 21-27, 2019

image © 2015, Shawn Cameron, “Making Plans”

About Cowboy Poetry Week
Get Involved
Rural Library Program
Poster by Shawn Cameron 

Elsewhere on the blog:
Cowboy Poetry Week News 
Cowboy Poetry Week Art Spur


by Jane Morton

The round-ups, the brandings,
the calvings are done,
as ranchers sell out
and move on one by one.

We must tell the stories,
so memories live on,
past time when the tellers
themselves are long gone.

© 2004, Jane Morton

Cowboy Poetry Week is celebrated each year during April, National Poetry Month in the United States.

In 2019, Cowboy Poetry Week—the eighteenth annual—takes place April 21-27, 2019.

In 2019 it is made possible by generous support from Laura and Edmund Wattis Littlefield, a grant from the Margaret T. Morris Foundation, and the individuals and organizations who support the Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry. initiated Cowboy Poetry Week, and for the celebration’s second year, in April 2003, the United States Senate passed a resolution, with unanimous approval, recognizing our Cowboy Poetry Week celebration. Twenty-three states’ governors and other officials have recognized Cowboy Poetry Week since, and many activities take place in communities across the West and beyond.

See the 2019 events—to date—on the calendar here.


Get your schools, libraries, and community involved! Perform your poetry, donate a book or CD, share your knowledge.

Find ideas about how to get involved here.


The Rural Library Program is an important Cowboy Poetry Week outreach activity, a part of our mission to serve a mostly under-served community of rural Westerners. Each year, a new compilation CD of top classic and contemporary cowboy poetry is offered, along with Cowboy Poetry Week posters, to many rural libraries across the West. The CD is also available for purchase.




For 2019, the CD is MASTERS: VOLUME THREE, a collection of poems by Bruce Kiskaddon.

Find more about the CD here.

CDs are sent to libraries in Cowboy Poetry Week’s associated Rural Library Program, given to supporters (at the $50 USD level and higher) as thank you gifts, and available to the public.

Find information about the previous MASTERS CDs here, the BAR-D Roundup series, at





Arizona rancher and artist Shawn Cameron’s painting, “Making Plans,” is selected as the 2019 Cowboy Poetry Week poster image and a special Cowboy Poetry Week Art Spur.

Shawn Cameron tells about the painting:

Occasionally a moment in time lingers in your memory.  The clear morning air was brisk as my husband and another rider paused to discuss the day before them.  Plans were being made to cover their area of a large pasture during spring roundup.  I’ve never tired of observing men on a mission who have goals and possess the skills to accomplish them.  There is an undeniable posture of pride in these horseback men who face a day of unknown challenges with confidence and determination.  Even the horses contemplate the miles before them. My subjects are more than cowboys and horses but rather scenes of quiet strength and courage.  I was motivated by such an atmosphere to share “Making Plans” on canvas.

About Shawn Cameron, from her web site:

Shawn captures moments in the lives of those who live and work on ranches today. An article in Southwest Art by Mark Mussari in 2008 referred to Shawn as, “The Real Thing.” She’s considered an accomplished professional in western art but her roots run deeper than most. She descended from two pioneer families who came in ox drawn covered wagons from Virginia across the Oregon Trail and on a southerly route from Texas in the 1860s and 70s, driving herds of cattle with them. That began an Arizona ranching legacy that continues today into the seventh generation. The Hatchet brand registered by her father’s family in 1885 is one of the state’s oldest on file.

Shawn and Dean met while in high school and married after his tour in the army. They settled on her family’s cattle ranch where they raised three children and she continued working in her art. She expressed what she saw. Pencil was her primary medium at that time but oil, watercolor, pastel and bronze were added to the mix. Although she hopes to explore these areas more, oil painting is her focus today. Learning is a life-long passion and the art world is an infinite resource. The mentoring of several prominent western artists helped her work grow and evolve into an a career that has spanned 3 decades. She remains grateful to all but especially Bill Owen, for generously sharing his knowledge in many areas, for Joe Beeler whose continued encouragement and support meant so much and to Robert “Shoofly” Shufelt who opened a door to the world of professional art.

Resource material is gathered on the family’s ranch of Dean, other family members and cowboys as they work. These captured memories become visual references. They are taken to her studio and aide in the creation of oil paintings using a palette with colors selected for the time of day.

She is closely surrounded by critics for accuracy yet her goal is to grow in ability to portray the life she knows so well.

Exhibitions of her work include the Prix de West and Small Works Great Wonders at the Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, OK. She’s participated in Cowgirl Up! Art from the Other Half of the West at the Desert Caballeros Museum in Wickenburg, AZ where she was awarded the “Artist’s Choice Award” in 2007 and the “Governor’s Choice Award” in 2015 and 2016. Shawn was extremely honored to serve with Martin Grelle as Co-Featured Artists at the C.M. Russell Auction and Sale in 2008 in Great Falls, MT. She’s participated in the Night of Artists at the Briscoe Museum in San Antonio, TX and The Cheyenne Art Show in Cheyenne, WY. Another Texas art event she’s been involved in was the Heart of the West at the Cowgirl Hall of Fame in Ft. Worth, TX where her mother’s 1942 Madison Square Garden photo is displayed. It’s been her pleasure to participate in the American Miniatures at Settler’s West Gallery in Tucson, AZ and the Masters in Miniature at the Phippen Art Museum in Prescott, AZ. Early in her career she was awarded the “Phippen Family Award” for a graphite drawing titled “Ranch Weathered” at the 1993 Phippen Western Art Show, in Prescott, AZ. The Mountain Oyster Club in Tucson, AZ presented her with a “Lifetime Honorary Membership”in 2013.

In 2019 Shawn was given the “Will Rogers Award for Artist of the Year” by the Academy of Western Artists.

Her art has been featured on the cover of publications such as Western Art Collector, American Cowboy and Western Horseman. She’s been a featured artist in a number of magazines including Southwest Art, Art of the West, Western Art Collector and Western Horseman.

Find more about Shawn Cameron hereat; on Facebook at Shawn Cameron Painting the West, and at her site,

We were honored to have Shawn Camerons’ painting, “Making Adjustments,” for the 2013 Cowboy Poetry Week poster and Art Spur. Other past poster artists include Duward Campbell, Bob Coronato, Tim Cox, Don Dane, William Matthews, Tyler Crow, Clara Smith, Gary Morton, the late Bill Owen, Jason Rich, R.S. Riddick, and the late Joelle Smith. Find more at

Posters are never sold. They are sent to participants in Cowboy Poetry Week’s Rural Library Program and sent to Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry supporters (at the $50 USD level and higher) as thank you gifts.


Find our current individual donors and sponsors here on this blog.

See all of the generous supporters to the Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry and find how to be a part of it all here.


You can make a donation by check or money order, by mail (please use the form here for mail) or by a secure, on-line credit card payment through PayPal (a PayPal account is not required):

x-click-but21 is a project of The Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry, a tax-exemptnon-profit organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service Act. The Center seeks grants and donations from individuals, corporate entities, foundations, and private sources.

Contributions to the Center are fully deductible for federal income tax purposes.

The BAR-D Roundup fair market value is $15 and that amount is not deductible as a charitable contribution.

As in all professional journalistic endeavors, no editorial preference is given to financial sponsors or supporters.










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