THOSE WERE THE DAYS
by Andy Nelson
Two brothers sat on a porch just talking,
About the way it used to be;
They debated the good old days while rocking,
But they never seemed to agree.
Seems each of them recalled it differently,
From the way the other one did;
Many years had passed, and not very gently,
From the time that each was a kid.
Bro 1: “Do you remember the pond in the forty,
Where we would skinny dip all day;
Boy, those were the days when a kid was set free,
We’d just pass the hours away.”
Bro 2: “But don’t you remember the stinging nettle,
That adorned our favorite pool;
When you fell, it really tested your mettle,
You couldn’t even walk to school.”
Bro 1: “What about the clod fights in the garden spot,
We’d spend hours pelting each other;
Ah, those were the days that just cannot be bought,
Quality time with your brother.”
Bro 2: “Don’t you remember when I picked up a rock,
And chucked it instead of a clod;
It knocked you out cold and it left a nice pock,
And I swear you nearly saw God.”
Bro 1: “How about BB gun trips to the old dump,
We’d shoot up beer bottles and cans;
Now those were the days, we’d reload by the stump,
Gunfighting those old pots and pans.
Bro 2: “But don’t you remember that rusty old nail,
You stuck though the sole of your boot;
And the tetanus shots that made you turn pale,
Oh ya, that was really a hoot.”
Bro 1: “But you have to admit the hours we spent
horseback was the time of our lives;
Oh, those were the days, all the places we went,
Pretending to be on the drives.”
Bro 2: “Ya, but don’t you recall when that little paint,
Dusted you off under a tree;
You broke your arm in three places, and that ain’t
counting what he did to your knee.”
Bro 1: “Well, you make it sound like our childhood just sucked,
That nothing we did was of worth;
That all our dogs bit and every horse bucked,
And did since the day of our birth.”
Bro 2: “That’s not what I’m saying, don’t make it sound bad,
Our childhood went out in a blaze;
I enjoyed each and ev’ry wreck that you had,
I’m telling you, those were the days!”
© 2019, Andy Nelson
This poem should not be reposted or reprinted without the author’s permission
Pinedale, Wyoming’s Andy Nelson is a second-generation farrier, cowboy poet, emcee, humorist, rodeo announcer, and co-host (with his brother Jim) of the popular syndicated Clear Out West (C.O.W.) radio show. Listen to the current and past shows here.
This poem comes from his own life, and Andy comments, “We had the best childhood ever, the kind that everyone dreams of. It is a wonder that we made it to adulthood in one piece… but that doesn’t mean we grew up! One thing is for sure and for certain though, big brother Jim is not just my brother, he is my hero and my best friend.”
Andy Nelson’s most recent CD is Uncle Charlie and the Squeeze Chute of Death. Find more about it and an included poem in a brief review here. Andy is at work on a new collection of his poems, due out at the end of the year.
Andy keeps a busy schedule and one place he’s headed is Utah’s 25th annual Heber Valley Cowboy Music & Poetry Gathering, October 23-27, 2019. The popular five-day event has 33 shows on 8 stages with additional attractions, exhibits, and vendors.
There he will join poets Waddie Mitchell, R.P. Smith, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Jeff Carson, Jake Riley, and Rolf Flake. Featured musicians are Diamond Rio, Michael Martin Murphey, Bar J Wranglers, Billy Dean, Andy Griggs, Rory Feek, John Wayne Schulz, Brenn Hill, Sourdough Slim, Carin Mari, Erica Hansen, High Country Cowboys, Molly in the Mineshaft, Many Strings, The Cowboy Way, Stacy Despain, Belinda Gail, Hank Cramer, Charley Jenkins Band, Carter Junction, Flyover Town, In Cahoots, and the Heber Valley Orchestra.
This year’s impressive poster for the Heber Valley Cowboy Music & Poetry Gathering is by Steve Devenyns.
Find Andy Nelson’s complete schedule and more at cowpokepoet.com.
Pictured: Andy and Jim Nelson.
(Please respect copyright. You can share this poem and photo with this post, but for other uses, request permission.)
We’ll be on a break from September 6-20,
but there will be regularly scheduled posts.