celebrates our Western heritage and today’s working West, dedicated to preserving our important history and to promoting the Western arts that carry on those traditions.  It’s a part of the non-profit Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry.

The Center was formed to serve a mostly rural and under-served community of Western writers, musicians, and artists; to help preserve Western and Cowboy Poetry and its associated arts; to offer a central resource for poets, libraries, schools, and the public; and to educate the public about the history and value of Western and Cowboy Poetry and its associated arts.

Supporters make a difference. With individual support, the Center can continue its programs, expand some of those efforts, and take on new projects. Individual support helps show institutional funders the community interest in our Western arts.

We thank our supporters, who are listed below. They make an important difference to the community of Western writers, musicians, and artists as we work together to preserve Western heritage and support Western and Cowboy Poetry and its associated arts. Please join us.

The BAR-D supporters make all of the programs of the Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry possible: Cowboy Poetry Week, the Rural Library Program, and



RANGE Magazine (sponsor)
Linda Kirkpatrick
Almeda Bradshaw (sponsor)
Susan Matley
Marci Broyhill (sponsor)
Winnsboro Cowboy Poetry & Music Gathering (sponsor)
Lone Star Cowboy Poetry Gathering (sponsor)
Chuck and Cindy Learn (sponsors)
Robert Anderson
Jim Cardwell
David Carlton
Doris Daley and Al Mehl
Sally Baldus
Susie Knight
Richard R. Hall
Patrick Sullivan
Shelagh Wuff Wisdom
Suzy Knisley
Jo Kirkwood
DW Groethe
Teresa Burleson
Rodney Nelson
Shelly Pagliai-Prairie Moon Quilts
Tom Hawk
Kelly Van Patten

E.W. Littlefield Jr.,  2019-2020 significant program support
Margaret T. Morris Foundation,  2020 generous program support


RANGE Magazine (sponsor)
Marci Broyhill (sponsor)
Jim Thompson (Sacramento, CA)
Mark Munzert
Marilyn and Kip Sorlie
Shelly Pagliai-Prairie Moon Quilts
LaVerna B. Johnson
Almeda Bradshaw (sponsor)
Georganna Kresl
Susie Knight
Jeff Campbell
Betty and Ken Rodgers
Linda Nadon in memory of Georgie Sicking and Elizabeth Ebert
Al “Doc” Mehl and Doris Daley
Paul R. Brown III
Jeri Dobrowski
Dee Strickland Johnson (“Buckshot Dot”)
Rodney Nelson
Kay Kelley Nowell
Sally Baldus
Dave Stanley
Dale Page
Alan Mollenkopf
James Stanley
Ginger Manley
Jo Kirkwood
Susan Parker (sponsor)
Roshana Floyd
Denise Arvidson in memory of Ross Christian Arvidson
Scott and Diana Overcash
Fred Haines
Patricia Frolander
Wendy Brown
DW Groethe
Stella and Ol’ Jim Cathey in memory of Charles (Charlie) Prentiss
and Loretta Kay (Flake) Kanavel
KC LaCourse
Valerie and Floyd Beard
Ray Hopper
Nancy Flagg
Richard R. Hall
Hugh Cooke
Stan Howe
Karen Bartholoma
K L Fischer
Betty Burlingham
Ken Cook (sponsor)
Keith Ward
George Rhoades
Jeffrey Johnson
Tom Hawk
Dick May
David Stanley
Marleen Bussma
Yvonne Hollenbeck (sponsor)
Jerry Brooks
Heber Valley Cowboy Music & Poetry Gathering (sponsor)
Terry Nash
Gary McMahan
Stella and Ol’ Jim Cathey in memory of Col. Ralph Hodge
Daniel Bybee
Sandy Seaton Sallee
Jarle Kvale
Shane Queener
John Waters
Tom and Carla Swearingen
David Sudbury
Cindy and Chuck Learn (sponsors)
Ramblin’ Rangers
Eileen Dirksen, in memory of Steve “California Steve” Dirksen
Mark Munzert
Deanna Dickinson McCall
David Carlton
Rod Miller
Jean Mathisen Haugen
Keith Ward
Marilyn Ball
P’let and Michael Tcherkassky
Marilyn and Kip Sorlie
Jim Thompson (California)
Dee Strickland Johnson (“Buckshot Dot”)
Roberta Rothman
Ginger Manley
The Cowboy’s Workshop
Jay and Sandi Snider (sponsors)
Andria Kidd
Smoke Wade
Lynn Kopelke

E.W. Littlefield Jr.,  2019-2020 significant program support
Margaret T. Morris Foundation,  2019 and 2020 generous program support
Jean A. Emmons, super donor


John Waters
Paul R. Brown III
Almeda Bradshaw (sponsor)
Jim and Stella Cathey in memory of Louise M. Fritts
Marci Broyhill (sponsor)
Buzz Helfert
Al “Doc” Mehl and Doris Daley
Susan Matley in memory of Liz Masterson
Charmaine Ganson
Susan Parker
Marvin and Elaine Del Chiaro
Thomas F. Hawk
Terry Nash
Rodney Nelson
Patrick Sullivan
Jerry A. Brooks
Cindy Quigley
Lawrence Smith
Diana Rice
Susan Shuma
Susie Knight
David Carlton
Russ Westwood
Scott and Diana Overcash in memory of Debi Koppang
M. Todd Hess
David Sudbury
Janet Prezia
Georganna Kresl
L.L. “Lucky Lindy” Segall in memory of Carlos Ashley
Hugh Cooke
Linda Nadon in memory of Georgie Sicking
Don Hilmer
Yvonne Hollenbeck (sponsor)
Yvonne and Glen Hollenbeck
in memory of Liz Masterson, Kenny Krogman, Elizabeth Ebert
Jeff Thomas
Martha Singer
Ken Howry—Sunshine Prairie Farm
Jeri Dobrowski
Ron Secoy
Michael Henley
Jane and Dick Morton
Karen Bartholomew
Stella Callentine
Mark Munzert
Bryce Angell
Maryanne Patterson
Betty Burlingham
Denise Arvidson in memory of Ross Christian Arvidson
C.W. (Charley) Bell
Chuck and Cindy Learn (sponsor)
Kay Kelley Nowell
Charles A. St. Lucas
George Rhodes
Nick Bales
Rhonda Sedgwick Stearns (sponsor)
Bill Siems
Jim and Stella Cathey in memory of Sammie Green
Andy Nelson-Clear Out West (sponsor)
Jean Prescott (sponsor)
Marleen Bussma
Tom Swearingen
Gary McMahan
The Cowboy’s Workshop
Tom Linenbrink
Robert Dennis
Totsie Slover
Michael Henley
Richard Hall
Joseph C and Robin B Thomas
Daniel Wilson
John Walker
Jarle Kvale
Dale Page
Sally Smith-Joelle Smith Western Art
Daniel Bybee
Spalding Labs Flying SL Ranch Radio Show (sponsor)
Jerry A. Brooks
Terry Nash
Ron Secoy
Andria Kidd
Western Folklife Center (sponsor)
Sandy Seaton Sallee
Jean A. Haugen
Brian Sullivan
Smoke Wade
P’let and Mike Tcherkassky
Janice Gilbertson
Jeff Thomas
Mary Beth Piatt
Lynn Kopelke
Teresa Burleson
Deanna Dickinson McCall
Jay Snider (sponsor)
Roberta Rothman
The Cowpoke Fall Gathering (sponsor)
Sherrie Swanson
Linda Kirkpatrick
Rod Miller
Greg Camp

2019 program support:
Edmund Wattis Littlefield Jr.
Margaret T. Morris Foundation



See all of the generous supporters to the Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry below 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 mail to PO Box 1107, Lexington, VA 24450) 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-exempt non-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.

Donors at the $50 level* and higher receive the year’s CD and Cowboy Poetry Week poster. (The CD fair market value is $15 and that amount is not deductible as a charitable contribution.) *$65 USD for Canada and other international locations.

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













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THAT LITTLE BLUE ROAN by Bruce Kiskaddon



by Bruce Kiskaddon (1878-1950)

Most all of you boys have rode horses like that.
He wasn’t too thin but he never got fat.
The old breed that had a moustache on the lip;
He was high at the wethers and low at the hip.
His ears always up, he had wicked bright eyes
And don’t you furgit he was plenty cow wise.

His ears and his fets and his pasterns was black
And a stripe of the same run the length of his back.
Cold mornin’s he’d buck, and he allus would kick
No hoss fer a kid or a man that was sick.
But Lord what a bundle of muscle and bone;
A hoss fer a cow boy, that little blue roan.

For afternoon work or for handlin’ a herd,
He could turn any thing but a lizzard or bird.
For ropin’ outside how that cuss could move out.
He was to ’em before they knowed what ’twas about.
And runnin’ down hill didn’t faize him aytall.
He was like a buck goat and he never did fall.

One day in the foot hills he give me a break
He saved me from makin’ a awful mistake,
I was ridin’ along at a slow easy pace,
Takin’ stock of the critters that used in that place,
When I spied a big heifer without any brand.
How the boys ever missed her I don’t onderstand.
Fer none of the stock in that country was wild,
It was like takin’ candy away from a child.

She never knowed jest what I had on my mind
Till I bedded her down on the end of my twine.
I had wropped her toes up in an old hoggin’ string,
And was buildin’ a fire to heat up my ring.
I figgered you see I was there all alone
Till I happened to notice that little blue roan.

That hoss he was usin’ his eyes and his ears
And I figgered right now there was somebody near.
He seemed to be watchin’ a bunch of pinon,
And I shore took a hint from that little blue roan.

Instead of my brand, well, I run on another.
I used the same brand that was on the calf’s mother.
I branded her right pulled her up by the tail
With a kick in the rump for to make the brute sail.
I had branded her proper and marked both her ears,
When out of the pinions two cow men appears.

They both turned the critter and got a good look
While I wrote the brand down in my own tally book.
There was nothin to do so they rode up and spoke
And we all three set down fer a sociable smoke.
The one owned the critter I’d happened to brand,
He thanked me of course and we grinned and shook hands
Which he mightn’t have done if he only had known
The warnin’ I got from that little blue roan.

…by Bruce Kiskaddon, 1947, from “Rhymes of the Ranges”
Hal Cannon, retired Founding Director of the Western Folklife Center and currently a part of the acclaimed 3hattrio band, writes, in his introduction to Rhymes of the Ranges (1987), “Probably the most often recited of Kiskaddon’s poems is ‘The Little Blue Roan.” The editor of the Western Livestock Journal concurred, writing in a 1938 note about Kiskaddon’s work, that “Probably his ‘Little Blue Roan’ is the most popular.”

While the poem may have been overshadowed in recent years by others, what Hal Cannon had to say merits considering:

It tells of a cowboy about to brand an unmarked heifer. The cowboy tells how his little horse keeps watching some pinon trees in the distance as he prepares to put his brand on another man’s animal. The horse’s uneasiness makes him decide to brand the heifer with the same brand that is on her mother standing nearby. As he does, two cowmen emerge from the pinion, but, seeing that everything is right with the branding, they all sit for a sociable smoke. A potentially explosive situation has been averted by the warning from the horse.

The poem bursts with potential drama and emotion. Yet, it is so intensely understated that, to the casual reader, it might seem barely to hold together. It has great meaning only to someone who shared intimately the significance of a brand, the complicated ethics of cattlemen, cowboy language, and the love of a horse…This kind of shared knowledge is at the heart of folk art, for effective folk art depends most deeply on communicating the shared experiences of the group that produces it.

In his monumental collection of Bruce Kiskaddon’s poems (nearly 500), Open Range, editor Bill Siems also includes an earlier version of this poem, from Kiskaddon’s 1935 book, Western Poems.


The late J.B. Allen’s recitation of “That Little Blue Roan” is included on MASTERS: VOLUME THREE, a 3-disc CD of Bruce Kiskaddon’s poems.

Find more in the Kiskaddon features at

This 2005 photograph, titled “Two Young Nakota Mares,” is by François Marchal and is from Wikimedia Commons.

The poem is in the public domain.

News Bits and Links

readingnews“Reading the News,” by Erwin E. Smith, c. 1908 from The Library of Congress

We receive and come across all sorts of interesting information from a wide range of sources. Below, we gather some quick links to news stories, web features, and other items of interest gathered from the web, social media, and from you, the most recent posted first.

Your suggestions for consideration of inclusion are welcome (as well as your comments). Email us.

image, “Ranch Water,” © 2019, Teal Blake

Cowboy Poetry Week



Subscribe to our occasional newsletter.

Lone Star Cowboy Poetry Gathering this week,” Odessa American, February 21, 2020

Cowboy poetry is alive on the Palouse,” by Joel Kemegue, Daily Evergreen, February 20, 2020

Outside Circle,” by Jan Swan Wood, Tri-State Livestock News, February 20, 2020


Lone Star Cowboy Poetry Gathering This Week in Alpine,”, February 18, 2020

Recent Elko gathering is another one for the books,” by Rodney Nelson,, February 18, 2020

Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame welcomes new members,” by Lindsie Hiatt,, February 18, 2020

Cowboy Poetry returns to Mesquite this weekend,” by VRobison,, February 18, 2020


Western Heritage Award Winners include Andy Hedges and Teal Blake, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, February 14, 2020

Rodney Nelson’s “Up Sims Creek” columns from Farm & Ranch online again at

Miles City Cowboy Poetry Gathering, March 1,” Ekalaka Eagle, February 14, 2020

Avery’s Lost Trails: Cowboy poet, historian and journalist – Arthur Chapman, December 6, 1935,” by Avery Martinez, Estes Park Trail Gazette, February 13. 2020


Rodeo romance: Finding love the cowboy way this Valentine’s Day,” by Gerald M. Gay and Cathalena E. Burch,,  February 12, 2020

Organizers Look Forward to Equifest in Salina,” by Todd Pittenger,, February 12, 2020


Andy Hedges interviews DW Groethe, Cowboy Crossroads, February 11, 2020


Verses from a Changing Frontier,” by Sonja Swanson,, February 10, 2020


To gather, and all the things that phrase means to a ranch woman,” by Jessie Veeder, Inforum, February 9, 2020

Anticipation building for Equifest 2020,” by Frank J. Buchman, The Salina Journal, February 9, 2020

Genoa Western Heritage Days returns in April,” The Record-Courier, February 8, 2020

Glendale Folk and Heritage Festival Celebrates Arizona Lore and Culture,” Glendale Daily Planet, February 7, 2020

Cowboy Poetry Returns to Mesquite in February, 2020,” Mesquite Local News, February 7, 2020

Black cowboys highlighted at Nevada annual poetry gathering,” The Hour, Friday, February 7, 2020

Cowboy Poets Give New Life to the Old West,” by Carson Vaughan, The National (Amtrak), February/March 2020

The Animals of Winter,” by Jessie Veeder, Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch blog, February 5, 2020

In Alpine, Cowboy Poetry Hangs on for Another Ride,” by Matt Joyce,, February 4, 2020

Managing Cattle To Mitigate Climate Change,” by Kathleen Masterson,, February 4, 2020

Dispatches from the West,” by Rod Miller (blog), February 4, 2020

Real cowboys write poems,” by Carson Vaughan, National Geographic, February 2, 2020

Cowboy poetry is a 150-year-old tradition. Will it survive in the 21st century?,” by Ryan T. Bell, National Geographic, February 1, 2020

Washoe County Parks hosts ‘Come in from the Cold’ music series at the Bartley Ranch,” News 4, February 1, 2020

Laughter rules at ‘The 70s Show’,” by Toni Milano, Elko Daily Free Press, February 1, 2020

Time travel with tintypes,” by Cynthia Delaney, Elko Daily Free Press, January 31, 2020

Colorado cowboy gathering and my new ‘FLY’,” by Victor T. Anderson,, January 31, 2020

Workshop was a ‘bonefied’ good time,” by Cynthia Delaney, Elko Daily Free Press, January 31, 2020


The Whistle Has Sounded,” (Bob Schild), by Rod Miller (blog) January 26, 2020

Columnist Jessie Veeder, several other North Dakotans invited to National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Forum News Service,  Grand Forks Herald, January 24, 2020

Veterans Oral History Project returns to the Poetry Gathering,” Elko Daily Free Press, January 24, 2020

Michael Martin Murphey and the Rio Grande Band to perform at the 36th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Western Folklife Center, Elko Daily Free Press, January 23, 2020

Buckaroo stories: Payette man heads to northern Nev. poetry gathering,” by Corey Evan, The Argus Observer, January 22, 2020

Film-tastic! Documentaries, short films peer into cowboy culture,” Elko Daily Free Press, January 22, 2020


Cowboy Poet Portraits in Tintype, a project by Kevin Martini-Fuller, Kickstarter

Bob Schild, 1931-2020

Cimarron Sounds,” a new regular feature by R.W. Hampton, Cowboys & Indians magazine, January, 2020


There’s a family feel here,” by Paul Albani-Burgio, Golden Transcript, January 21, 2020


Bucket List: National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Dana Joseph, Cowboys & Indians, January 21, 2020

One sitting each,” by Rod Miller (blog), January 20, 2020

Storytellers: The Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Bryan Wendland,, January 19, 2020


Plan to repopulate Scottish island of Ulva begins with … a herd of cattle,” by Kevin McKenna, The Guardian, January 19, 2020

Women-Led Rodeo Competition Returns to the Valley,” by Madison Rutherford, Phoenix Magazine, January 2020

Activities for youth, families at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” Western Folklife Center, Elko Daily Free Press, January 16, 2020

Comedies, multimedia, cowboy poetry to hit stages in Colorado Springs, Denver,” by Jennifer Mulson, The Gazette, January 16, 2020

Black cowboys a focus at the 2020 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, an interview with Dom Flemons,” by Will Houk, Nevada Capital News, January 16, 2020

Outside Circle” by Jan Swann Wood,, January 16, 2020

‘I Was Just A Cowboy Who Wrote Poetry’: Poet Reflects Ahead Of Gathering,” by Stephanie Daniel,, January 16, 2020

Cowboy Vegetarian Cookbook,” by Baxter Black (latest “On the Edge of Common Sense” column),,  January 7, 2020

Reem’s recipes to be featured at Gathering,” by Cynthia Delaney, Elko Daily Free Press, January 15, 2020


To be a cowboy,” by Jessie Veeder, Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch (blog), January 13, 2020

Meet Najiah Knight, the 13-Year-Old Girl Upending the World of Professional Bull Riding,” by Corey Seymour, Vogue, January 7, 2020


The Last of New York’s Black Cowboys,” By Sarah Maslin Nir, NY Times, January 10, 2020

Webcast with Jerry Brooks, Bill Jones, Vess Quinlan and more from the Library of Congress, November 2019 (transcript)

Folk & Heritage Festival back to take over Glendale,” Glendale Independent, January 9, 2020

Poetry, comedy, music and heaping helping of beans,” by Paul Albani-Burgio, Arvada Press, January 8, 2020

[Lone Star] Poetry Gathering features youth poetry contest,” Orange Leader, Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Local cowboy singer, poet, and songwriter releases new book,” by Patty Hullett,, January 6, 2020

Cowboy Coffee with Kent Rollins and Jeff Goldblum, Youtube/Disney+,  January 3, 2020

Beulah Woman Named ‘Western Woman of the Year’,” by Renee Cooper,, January 2, 2020


Cowboy Poets of the New West,” by Meredith Lawrence, Alta, January 7, 2020

Cow Disturber,” by Baxter Black (latest “On the Edge of Common Sense” column),,  January 7, 2020

A Day In The Life Of A Chuck Wagon Cook,” by Marshall Trimble, True West, December 18, 2019


Ding Dong,” by Rod Miller (blog), December 30, 2019

Reckoning, new from John Dofflemyer,


Oh Christmas Pug, Oh Christmas Pug…,” by Jessie Veeder, Back at the Ranch (blog), December 30, 2019

Great Falls Symphony Orchestra & Choir premiere Paul Zarzyski’s “Grace” (program and lyrics pdf)


Heather Hafleigh programs a special Cowboy Poetry and Music edition of The Hear and Now, 10 p.m., Thursday, January 2, 2020,


Dennis Gaines, 1954-2019

Cleve Rice, 1936-2019,, December 27, 2019

Outside Circle,” by Jan Swan Wood, Tri-State Livestock News, December 26, 2019

‘It’s just something I crave’: a young Native American finds her home in rodeo,” by Eli Imadali,, December 25, 2019


Joe and Maria,” by Baxter Black, (on his Facebook page), December 23, 2019

Podcasts to Queue for Your 2020 Playlist,” by Hunter Hauk, Cowboys & Indians magazine, December 23, 2019


San Simon’s cowboy poets,” by Heather Lentz,, December 20, 2019


36th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering celebrates black cowboys,” by the Western Folklife Center, Elko Daily Free Press, December 19, 2019

Testimony,” by Baxter Black, Tri-State Livestock News, December 19, 2019


Branding: Paregien Ranch 2019,” by John Dofflemyer,, December 19, 2019

Christmas for Axel,” by Bryce Angell, Teton Valley News, December 19, 2019

Santa Claus’ official veterinarian OK the reindeer for flight,” AGDAILY, December 17, 2019

Silent Night: Lindsay’s step away from Cowboy Christmas Gathering,” by Evan J. Pretzer, The Observer, December 13, 2019

Cowboy Christmas brings classic Dickens tale with a cowboy twist to Chilliwack Cultural Centre,”, December 8, 2019

Holiday on the Frontier,” by Jose R. Ralat, Cowboys & Indians, December 6, 2019


A Taste Of The Holidays, Cowboy-Style,” by Jim Kent, Weekend Edition Saturday/NPR, December 14, 2019

History in Focus: The New Tourism,” by James Neton, Craig Daily Press, December 12, 2019


Flick benefit concert to aid cowboy in crisis,” by Kurt Liedtke, Lake County Examiner, December 11, 2019

Wyoming deputies lasso deer that fell through iced-over pond,” Western Slope Now, December 11, 2019

Someone is gluing miniature cowboy hats on pigeons in Las Vegas,” by Deanna Paul, The Washington Post, December 10, 2019

Between the Bedroll Sheets: It’s Not What You Think,” by Jolyn Young, Western Horseman, November 20, 2019


Leroy and Tom,” by Baxter Black (latest “On the Edge of Common Sense” column),,  December 9, 2019


Riding the Cowboy Poetry Trail,” by Bill Jones, RANGE, Winter 2020

Lake County [CA] is seeking its next poet laureate,” Lake County Record-Bee, December 7, 2019


Playing the Slots,” by Rod Miller (blog), December 6, 2019

Elko’s buckaroo roots on display at new Cowboy Arts, Gear Museum,” by Richard Moreno, Nevada Appeal, December 4, 2019

The Essential West,” by Bill Reynolds, Western Horseman, December 4, 2019


Kent Rollins, the King of Cowboy Cooking, is Carrying the Fire,” by Eddie Kim,, December 3, 2019


A conversation with cowboy songster Andy Hedges,” by Will Houk, Nevada Capital News, December 3, 2019

Kathy Moss wins international poetry award,” by Angel Carpenter, Blue Mountain Eagle, December 3, 2019

BC Cowboy Heritage Society Newsletter with Kamloops news December, 2019


Goddess of the Hunt,” by Baxter Black (latest “On the Edge of Common Sense” column),,  December 2, 2019

Sedona Museum Presents: What’s In A Name?! with Michael Peach,” Sedona Times, December 2, 2019

Cowboy Poetry Contest announces winners,” by Toni Hopper,, November 30, 2019

Coyotes have expanded their range to 49 states—and show no signs of stopping,” by Christine Dell Amore, National Geographic, November 29, 2019

Young cowboy poets write about the Chisholm Trail and western life,” The Duncan Banner, November 28, 2019

Western Folklife Center seeks volunteers for Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” Elko Daily Free Press, November 28, 2019

Museum holds 2019 Student Cowboy Poetry Contest,” Wickenburg Sun, November 27, 2019


A Sheep Thanksgiving,” by Baxter Black (latest “On the Edge of Common Sense” column),,  November 25, 2019

A Cowpuncher’s Night Before Christmas,” (with video) by Ross Hecox, Western Horseman, November 22, 2019

29th annual Kingsville Ranch Hand weekend,” by Roland Rodriguez,, November 22, 2019

Community spirit takes flight with food bank concert,” by Stephen Tipper,, November 22, 2019

Veach Saddlery Turns 100 Years Old,” by Jennifer Denison, Western Horseman, November 21, 2019

Performers for first Lone Star Cowboy Poetry Gathering Announced,” by Joe Hyde, San Angelo Live, November 20, 2019

Spur Award Contest Entries Sought,” Western Writers of America, November 10, 2019

Cowboy Artists Enjoy Move to Fort Worth,” by Ross Hecox, Western Horseman, November 8, 2019


Horse Psychology,” by Baxter Black (latest “On the Edge of Common Sense” column),,  November 11, 2019


Country Christmas comes early to pioneer museum,” by Evan J, Pretzer,, November 14, 2019

Three cows vanished during Hurricane Dorian. Months later, they’ve been found chilling on an island miles from shore,” by Antonia Noori Farzan, Washington Post, November 14, 2019

Cows swept off island during Hurricane Dorian found after swimming for miles,” Edward Helmore for The Guardian, Yahoo News, November 13, 2019

36th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering To Exhibit Artists & Films,”,  November 12, 2019

Quanah Parker Exhibit | One Man, Two Worlds (November 6-December 18, 2019)
National Multicultural Western Heritage Museum

Foal experiences snow for the first time,” ABC News Videos, November 13, 2019

Medical or Nutritional,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  November 11, 2019

Time to gather,” Jessie Veeder, Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch blog, November 11, 2019

Cutting a Pipe Collar off a Cow’s Leg,” by Lizzie Iwersen (video), Western Horseman, November 4, 2019

Ultimate free-range kids: Two boys, 6 and 10, rode horses to New York — from Oklahoma,” by Eliza McGraw, Washington Post, October 19, 2019


‘Climate Change’ Cowboy Logic,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  November 6, 2019

The Cowboys: How 12 poets, singers and songwriters came together in Grand Junction,” by Dan West,, November 4, 2019

20 Mule Team reenactment visits Death Valley,” The Daily Independent, November 4, 2019

Bing Crosby’s Nevada get-away ranch on market for $7.28 million,” by WKRC/Local 12, November 2, 2019

Horse owners scramble to evacuate their animals ahead of California fire,” by Tom Kisken and Kathleen Wilson, Ventura County Star/Yahoo News/USA TODAY, October 30, 2019


Cowboy Poet Floyd Beard Performs ‘Canyons’,” Western Horseman (YouTube), October 29, 2019


A Hundred Years from Now,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  October 30, 2019

California Vineyards and Ranchers at Risk as Wildfires Rage,” by Michael Hirtzer and Marvin G. Perez, Bloomberg/Yahoo News, October 30, 2019

Western Slope Cowboy Gathering,”, October 30, 2019

Pomegranate Arts and Crafts Festival This Weekend,” by Charlene Paul, Maopa Valley Progress, October 30, 2019

Wild Westerns: Five Classic “Twilight Zone” Episodes,” by Joe Leydon, Cowboys & Indians, October 23, 2019

Rural veterinarian shortage: Are you experiencing it?,” by Katie James, Drovers,
October 22, 2019


14th Annual Comstock Cowboy Poet Gathering Nov. 2-Nov. 3,” by Gavin Higgins,, October 28, 2019

Best Museum: Frisco Historic Park & Museum,” by Jefferson Geiger,, October 26, 2019


Cowboy Poet To Be Honored With Bronze Sculpture in Fort Worth Stockyards,” by Deborah Ferguson,, October 25, 2019

Outside Circle,” by Jan Swan Wood,, October 24, 2019

NFarm Animals in History,” by Baxter Black, latest column at, October 23, 2019

WRCA Announces Special Screening of ‘Cowboys: A Documentary Portrait,’, October 23, 2019

The Heber Valley Western Music & Cowboy Poetry Gathering Starts This Week,” by David Boyle,, October 22, 2019

A look into the future,” by Rod Miller (blog), October 22, 2019

Some old west fun: Cowboy poetry, music, dinner set for Nov. 1 and 2 at Seminary,” by Deb Nicklay, Austin Daily Herald, October 19, 2019

Southeastern Cowboy Festival & Symposium to celebrate 17th year,” by Randy Parker, The Daily Tribune, October 19, 2019


Romancing the West comes to Lakeview,” by Margot Dodds, Lake County Examiner, October 16, 2019

Gamble, Steven R. (1959-2019), Bozeman Daily Chronicle, October 16, 2019

Five Reasons to Attend Grand Junction’s Upcoming Cowboy Poetry Gathering,”, October 15, 2019

14 reasons (minus 12) I write about the West,” by Rod Miller (blog), October 14, 2019

Antique Wagon On Heber’s Main Street Destroyed,” by David Boyle,, October 14, 2019

A Cowboy Theatre review,” by Lea Leggitt, The Independent, October 14, 2019

Branding Iron opens for business in Blackfoot,” by John Miller, Bingham County Chronicle, October 14, 2019

Drone view of 6666 ranch working cattle,” by Wyman Meinzer (video, Facebook), October 13, 2019

Painting Cows To Look Like Zebras Has A Surprising Benefit,” by Josephine Harvey,, October 9, 2019


Lone Star Cowboy Poetry Gathering Set for February 2020 in Alpine,” by Joe Hyde, San Angelo LIVE, October 9, 2019

Yodeling Conrad cowboy inducted into MT Cowboy Hall of Fame,” Cut Bank Pioneer Press, October 9, 2019


Andy Hedges interviews Ian Tyson, Cowboy Crossroads, October 2019


Noah’s Dispersal Sale,” by Baxter Black, latest column at, October 9, 2019

Helen Bernice (Clark) Beard 1928-2019, Lewiston Tribune, October 9, 2019

Cowboy Poetry at Sunshine,” The New Era, October 9, 2019

Cowboy Parade draws hundreds,” by Bret Hauff, The Durango Herald, October 5, 2019 and video

Free concert of cowboy music and poetry offered at library,” Great Bend Tribune, October 4, 2019

Cowboy Poetry Gathering tickets on sale,” Elko Daily Free Press, October 3, 2019


Bruce Andrew Matley Memorial Service, The Leader, October 3, 2019

Back to Nature,” by Baxter Black, latest column at, October 2, 2019

Longmont Museum Brings New Excitement to Thursday Nights,”  by Sheila Conroy,, October 2, 2019

Cowboy Poetry in Rodeo,”, October 1, 2019

Cowboy poetry, music, dinner set for Nov. 1 and 2 at Seminary,” by Deb Nicklay, Mitchell County Press News, October 1, 2019

Historic Lakeview theater now belongs to the people,” by Kurt Liedtke, Herald and News, October 1, 2019

Guests hear original poetry and songs at annual Cowboy Poetry fundraiser,” By Aura Whittaker, Willits News, September 30, 2019


Betty Strong Encounter Center hosts outlaw poetry,”, September 30, 2019

Cowboy Poetry in Rodeo,”, September 27, 2019

Outside Circle by Jan Swan Wood: Barrel races, Alzada poetry, music and art, roughstock school, iron cowgirl,” by Jan Swan Wood,, September 26, 2019

True West Magazine Archives Back To 1953

Western way of life,” by Ron Warnick,, September 25, 2019

Angelo’s Leather & Saddle Shop in Dexter | a step back in time,” by Doug Marrin,,  September 23, 2019

BC Cowboy Heritage Society Newsletter (Kamloops) September 23, 2019

Cowboy poetry honours Wild West history,” by Hanna Kost, CBC News, September 22, 2019

Annual Alzada Cowboy Poetry, Music and Art Show,” by Chris Maupin, Fallon County Times, September 20, 2019

For These Black Women in Texas, Rodeo Is a Way of Life,” by Walter Thompson-Hernández, nytimes, September 20, 2019

Mighty MC,” by Kathy Moss, YouTube, September 20, 2019

Restoring Black Cowboys to the Range,” by Sarah Maslin Nir,, September 14, 2019


Trolling for Buffalo,” by Baxter Black, latest column at, September 4, 2019

Lady Buckaroo,” by Kathy Moss, YouTube, September 2, 2019

Karen Kuhlman reviews this year’s Cowboy Poetry and Western Music Rendezvous,” Robert Pfund,, September 2, 2019

Lost N Lava Cowboy Gathering starts Sept. 20,” Times-News, September 4, 2019

Cowgirl photographer Barbara Van Cleve,” by David Rothman, CBS News, August 25, 2019


Robert “Bob” Ross (1921-2019), Bozeman Daily Chronicle, August 28, 2019

Nothing’s Forever,” by Jesse Veeder, Back at the Ranch (blog),  August 28, 2019

Sir Loin,” by Baxter Black, latest column at, August 27, 2019

The Top 10 product names for fake meats,” by Mark Parker, FarmTalk, Aug 27, 2019

Wine tasting, Cowboy Poetry make lively events for Craig crowds at Luttrell Barn,” by Barry Steadman and Andy Bockelman, Craig Press, August 26, 2019

Stony Plain Cowboy Gathering sees surge in attendance,” by Evan J. Pretzer,
The Stony Plain Reporter, August 23, 2019

Conservationist helps Hawaii cattle ranchers tell their story,” by Jim George,, August 20, 2019


Cowboy Tracks radio from the Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering, August 16, 2019


Cowboys gather in Yountville Sept. 7 for music and poetry,” Napa Valley Register, August 21, 2019

‘Not one crusty old guy at that sale that didn’t have tears in his eyes’: Auction features steer raised by boy who died in accident,” by Laurie Welch,, August 21, 2019

Western Heritage Day at Mueller State Park to celebrate the ‘Old West’,” by Sonja Oliver, Pikes Peak Courier, August 21, 2019

The Lost Chicken,” by Baxter Black, latest column at, August 20, 2019

National Cowboy Poetry Rodeo 2019,” Salina Post, August 20, 2019

What Do Livestock Do For Your Mental Health?,” by Matt Brechwald,, August 20, 2019

Temple Grandin is Our Hero,” by Gene Johnston,, August 12, 2019


Mike Logan 1938-2019, Independent Record, August 17, 2019


The Feedlot Hand,” by Baxter Black, a poem latest column at, August 13, 2019

Monterey Cowboy Festival (announcing no event in 2019), August 14, 2019

34th Annual Cowboy Poetry and Western Music Gathering ready to celebrate,” by Robert Pfund,,  August 14, 2019

Clark County Fair this week,”,  August 14, 2019

Plastic bags are killing horses and cows across the state. What’s Texas to do?,” by Lara Korte, Texas Tribune, August 14, 2019

Featured Artists of the 36th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, Western Folklife Center, August 13, 2019

‘We Can’t Live in Fear’: Two Weeks After Shooting, Gilroy Celebrates Its Annual Rodeo,” by Sonja Hutson,, August 11, 2019

Billboard’s decision to nix ‘Old Town Road’ from country charts borders on un-American,” by Julian Smith,, August 11, 2019


Elko Cowboy Music & Poetry Gathering Comes To Napa Valley,” by Broadway World, August 7, 2019

American History, as told through beef,” by Bryce Oates, Daily Yonder,  August 7, 2019

The Anti-Smoking Device,” by Baxter Black, latest column at, August 6, 2019

Community Agriculture Alliance: Back roads and best friends — 104th annual Routt County Fair,” by Michele Meyer, Steamboat Pilot & Today, August 6, 2019

Word rodeo,” by Jean Bowers, Abilene Reflector-Chronicle, August 5, 2019

Glade Park’s Cowboy & Music Poetry Festival,, August 2, 2019

Poets to gather in Prescott, celebrate culture of the American cowboy,” by Jason Wheeler,  Prescott Daily Courier, August 1, 2019


Cowboy poetry, music show to return to Craig,” Craig Daily Press, July 30, 2019

National Day of the Cowboy,” American Quarter Horse Foundation (AQHF), July 30, 2019


Lone Star Cowboy Poetry Gathering organizes,” by Jim Street, The Big Bend Sentinel, July 24, 2019

Lone Star Cowboy Poetry Gathering, February 21-22, 2020, Alpine, Texas


Talking Dirty,” by Baxter Black,, July 30, 2019

Cowboy Up,” by Jamie A. Hunt, Porterville Recorder, July 29, 2019

Newport Folk Festival 2019: 10 Best Things We Saw” [includes Andy Hedges], by Jonathan Bernstein and Suzy Esposito, Rolling Stone, July 29, 2019

Pioneer Bluffs preserves and presents history of ranching with National Day of the Cowboy activities…“, by Tagan Trahoon,, July 27, 2019

Hitting the trail: Friends make 175 mile trek with horse and mules to promote local rodeo,” by Carrie Stadheim,, July 24, 2019


Saddle up: National Day of the Cowboy rounds up art exhibits, film series, Wild West shows and more,” by Brandy McDonnell,, July 26, 2019

International Western Music Association National Day of the Cowboy on Facebook

Doris Daley and Al “Doc” Mehl on Equestrian Legacy Radio July 25, 2019

Bring chairs for D.W. Groethe…,” by Sharon Cox, The Jamestown Sun, July 25, 2019

You’re invited to The National Day of the Cowboy this weekend,” by Vanessa Garcia, KFDA Amarillo, July 25, 2019

An evening of poetry by two greats,” Taos News, July 25, 2019

Benefit concert to kick off the Dakota Western Heritage Festival,” by John D. Taylor, Capital Journal, July 24, 2019

Community concert tips hat to cowboys July 27,” by Angel Carpenter, Blue Mountain Eagle, July 23, 2019

Porterville to celebrate Day of the Cowboy,” by Charles Whisnand,, July 23, 2019

Celebrating the bison: Buffalo Days starts July 25,” by Alexander Taylor, The Jamestown Sun, July 23, 2019


A new dispatch,” by Rod Miller, blog, July 19, 2019

Riverbend Live has Cowboy Poetry/Western Music,” by Kyle Bailey,, July 19, 2019

Best of the West,” by Rod Miller, Saddlebag Dispatches (page 156), Summer, 2019

Cowboy Poetry gets ready for a big weekend in August,” by Robert Pfund,, July 18, 2019

These Programs Will Pay Kansas Farmers For Crops They Won’t Harvest,” by Corrine Boyer, Harvest Public Media, July 18, 2019

Suzi And Tuff as Flip,” The Saratoga Sun, July 17, 2019

Buckshot Dot (Dee Strickland Johnson) interview on Blogtalk Radio, July 17, 2019

The Royal Russells,” by Michele Powers Glaze, Cowboys & Indians, July 12, 2019


Man travels across Montana, US on vintage tractor, raising funds for veterans,” by Juliana Sukut, Billings Gazette, July 13, 2019

Butterfield’s hosts first Day of the Cowboy celebration,” Duncan Banner, July 13, 2019

Nine-year-old girl to trick ride at Last Chance Stampede,” by Linda Pierson,,  July 12, 2019

Good Dawg,” by Baxter Black,, July 12, 2019

Three cowboys being inducted into Utah’s western-themed hall of fame,” by Mark Saal,  Standard-Examiner, July 12, 2019

Country music singer reveals the heart of the west to those who listen,”, July 10, 2019

Saluting the Flag,” by Rod Miller, blog,  July 9, 2019


It’s ‘frog walker’ time,” by Jerry Welch, Agrinews,  July 8, 2019


Ol’ Rookie,” by Baxter Black,,  July 8, 2019

The Culture of Cowboy Art presented at Willits Center for the Arts,” by Alyson Bailey, Willits News, July 4, 2019

Bob Petermann to Perform at the MonDak Heritage Center As Part of Confluence of Creativity Invitational Art Exhibit, July 14, Sidney,”, July 3, 2019

Cowboy singers, artists and poets at the Payson Book Festival,” by Linda Wescott, Payson Roundup, July 2, 2019


Return to Calgary: Charles M. Russell and the 1919 Victory Stampede  exhibit June 7 through September 29, 2019 at the C.M. Russell Museum


Come rain or shine or rain or wind or heat or hail…,” by Jessie Veeder, Meanwhile, back at the ranch (blog), July 2, 2019

‘J is for Jackalope’ Features Fort Worth Artist’s Western Charm,”by Matt Payne, Fort Worth Magazine, July 1, 2019

On newsstands now,” by Rod Miller (blog), July 1, 2019

Red Steagall Honored with Statue,” Fort Worth Business, June 28, 2019


Poetry Friday: Cowboy Poetry,” by Gillian Ferris and Tom Weathers,, June 28, 2019

Ontario’s Tradition Keepers Folklife Festival is Saturday, earns state award,” By Pat Caldwell, The Enterprise, June 28, 2019


‘Aloha Rodeo’ Offers Alternative To The Cowboy Cliché,” by Carson Vaughn, NPR, June 27, 2019

Four Rivers Cultural Center’s festival keeps up with tradition,” by Griffin Hewitt, The Argus Observer,  June 27, 2019

Piehl retrospective at Arts Center,” by Kathy Steiner, The Jamestown Sun, June 27, 2019

Ranchero Days to Be Celebrated at Hagemann Ranch,” The Independent, June 27, 2019

Bit-Making Showcase and Sale,” by Jennifer Denison, Western Horseman, June 26, 2019

Barbwire Dispatch from Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association (pdf) June, 2019

Celebrating a century: Belle Fourche’s Black Hills Roundup will honor those who rode before,” by Kaycee Moonens, Tri-State Livestock News, June 26, 2019

The Top 10 judgment calls you guessed wrong on,” by Mark Parker, FarmTalk, June 25, 2019

The traditionally horsemen culture of Maremma, Italy, yields to ‘horsewomen’ as a result of new training course,” by Gabrielle Saveri, Washington Post, June 24, 2019

4-H in my memories, by Jessie Veder,” Meanwhile, back at the ranch (blog), June 24, 2019

The Cost of Recycling,” by Baxter Black,,  June 24, 2019


Spend Sunday at the Tower,” The Sundance Times, June 19, 2019


Alabama longhorn sets Guinness World Record,”, June 17, 2019

Utah Arts Festival 2019: Thatch Elmer, 15, heralds new generation of cowboy poetry,” by Les Roka, The Utah Review, June 17, 2019

No hitches, small crowd at museum’s Rodeo Day,” by Nickolas Seibel, Silver City Press, June 17, 2019

Elim Church to host cowboy poet,” by Tammy Real-McKeighan, Fremont Tribune, June 16, 2019

Over 37,000 cattle lost during brutal 2018 winter in Montana,”  The Associated Press, June 16, 2019

Dozens saddle up for Kansas Cowboy Poetry contest,” by Reina Garcia,, June 15, 2019

S.D. ranchers raise 33K to fix broken U.S. cattle markets,”,  June 14, 2019

Pop Wagner, cinch maker and folksinger,” The Fence Post,  June 14, 2019

Durango Cowboy Poetry Gathering to host the barn dance and picnic,” Durango Herald,
June 13, 2019

Capturing the Vibrant Culture Of Black Cowboys,” by F Jones,, June 10, 2019

Dams Could Protect Ranchers From Climate Change’s Drought…But Could They Also Contribute To It?,” by Melodie Edwards, Wyoming Public Media, June 7, 2019


A Cowboy Parade,” by Baxter Black,,  June 10, 2019

Feet to the Fire,” by Amy M. Hale, Contra Viento Journal, Spring, 2019

One rancher’s plan to establish water buffalo in Colorado,” by Sarah Tory, High Country News, June 7, 2019

Moody Siblings Push Each Other to Excel in Rodeo,” by Lura Roti, Tri-State Livestock News, June 7, 2019

Ranching’s Image Gets a Reboot,”, June 4, 2019

As New Beef Campaign Launches, Some Groups seek ‘Transparency, Accountability,” by Bryce Oates,, June 4, 2019

2019 Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering Returns to Prescott, Arizona, for 32nd Year,” Prescott Living Magazine, June 3, 2019


Central Texas Cowboy Gathering this weekend at Stagecoach Station Venues,” by Derrick Stuckly, Brownwood Bulletin, June 6, 2019

Utah Arts Festival 2019: What’s the new vibe for the 43rd edition? Many new faces, events at all venues,” by Les Roka, The Utah Review, June 6, 2019

Poet Olivia Romo sings to the acequias,” by Teresa Dovalpage, The Taos News, June 6, 2019

Flooding Leads to Cattle Rescues Around the Country,” by Wyatt Bechtel,,
June 5, 2019


Training New Neighbors,” by Baxter Black,,  June 5, 2019


Celebrating Art,” by Rod Miller (blog), June 3, 2019

Buffalo Commons continues to set the bar high,” McCook Gazette, June 3, 2019

Get the gate,” by Jessie Veeder, Inforum, June 2, 2019

Warner Chappell Music Acquires Gene Autry Music Group,”, May 30, 2019


Ranchers Play Key Role In Saving Greater Yellowstone’s Wildlife Pathways,” by Lesli Allison, Mountain Journal, May 29, 2019

USDA ready to help Kansas farmers and ranchers recover from recent flooding, tornadoes,” High Plains/Midwest Ag Journal, May 29, 2019

‘American Soil’ Is Increasingly Becoming Foreign-Owned,” by Renee Wilde, Harvest Public Media, May 29, 2019

Group Of Oklahoma Cowboys Come Together To Rescue Livestock From Floods,” by Sawyer Buccy,, May 28, 2019


A Sea Of Sagebrush Disappears, Making Way For Fire-Prone Cheatgrass,” Ashley Ahearn,, May 30, 2019

Losing Ground,” John Dofflemyer, Dry Crik Journal, May 29, 2019

Losing Ground” (2019) – Urban Sprawl Film, Angus TV,  (YouTube) May 27, 2019

Hear Texan Andy Hedges at OKC’s Blue Door,” by Brandy McDonnell, The Oklahoman, May 29, 2019


Riverbend Live Announces 2019 Lineup,” by Kyle Bailey,,
May 29, 2019

Mule Days awards scholarships,” by Ellen Morris Bishop, Wallowa County
Chieftain, May 29, 2019

Foreign Language,” by Baxter Black,,  May 28, 2019

‘Aloha Rodeo’ Book Illuminates The History Of Hawaiian Cowboys,” by Peter O’Dowd,, May 27, 2019

Telford selected for scholarship,” Times-News, May 26, 2019

Agnes and Alice,” by Gwen Petersen, The Fence Post, May 24, 2019

Governor signs bill for National Day of the Cowboy,” by Karen Ricketts,, May 20, 2019


It’s What I Do,” by Baxter Black,,  May 20, 2019

Cowboy poetry to be featured at gathering in Medora,”, May 20, 2019

It’s a Cowboy I Will Be,” “The Cowboy Way” Scotland documentary film project

Not on days like today,” by Jessie Veeder, Inforum, May 19, 2019

Bard of the Southern Sierra: John Dofflemyer, fifth-generation California cattleman,” by Carolyn Dufurrena, RANGE, Summer 2019

Leon Rausch, The Voice of Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys, Has Died,”, May 14, 2019


In Texas, cattle rustling evolves into sophisticated multimillion-dollar crimes,” by Brandon Mulder,, May 12, 2019

The legacy of a rancher: cows and family,” by Jager Robinson, Rapid City Journal, May 12, 2019

Whoop It Up! Celebrating 100 Years of the Cody Stampede June 7, 2019 – March 31, 2020  Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Cody, Wyoming

Dakota cowboy poetry gathering to be held in Medora,” by Owen Piehl, Bismarck Tribune, May 10, 2019

The BC Cowboy Heritage Society newsletter May, 2019


33rd annual Dakota Cowboy Poetry Gathering set for May 25-26,” by Emma Vatnsdal,, May 7, 2019


Inheriting the Family Farm,” by Baxter Black,,  May 6, 2019

Wagon train traces historic rail route for 5 days for Gold Spike 150th,” by Matilyn Mortensen, The Herald Journal, May 6, 2019

If a rancher invented cussing, a rancher’s wife invented the walkaway mic drop,” by Jessie Veeder, Inforum, May 5, 2019

The Outside Circle Show,” by Bill Reynolds, Western Horseman, May 2, 2019


Senate OKs Day of Cowboy resolution,” by Phil Drake, Great Falls Tribune, April 25, 2019

Genoa Heritage Days get underway Friday in Carson Valley,” Tahoe Daily Tribune, April 25, 2019

Rural Towns Across The Midwest Struggle To Overcome Damage From Flooding,” by Frank Morris, KCUR, April 25, 2019

Walmart creates Angus beef supply chain, cutting out meat processors,” by Tom Polansek, Reuters, April 24, 2019

Kids invited to submit original poems for Santa Maria library’s Cowboy Poetry Contest,”
KSBY, April 23, 2019

Qualifying contests for Kansas Cowboy Poetry Contest set,”, April 23, 2019


In ‘Shadow of a Cowboy,’ Lubbock Songster Andy Hedges Explores Cowboy Tunes Old and New,” by Matt Joyce, Texas Highways, April 24, 2019

Cowboy Crossroads with Andy Hedges,”  an interview with Colter Wall, Cowboy Crossroads, April 23, 2019


80-year-old cowboy finds a way to get back in the saddle,” by Sean Giggy,, April 23, 2019

Backwoods Wisdom,” by Baxter Black,,  April 22, 2019

Riding with the gauchos of Argentina: a photo essay,” by Amanda Barnes, photography by Greg Funnell, The Guardian, April 19, 2019


Marmarth’s Mystic Theatre,” by Jack Dura, Prairie Public, April 22, 2019

Mankind,” by Paul Zarzyski, for Earth Day, (blog), April 22, 2019

Guys with Guitars,” by Rod Miller, (blog), April 20, 2019

The yodeler who sued Yahoo,” by Zachary Crockett, The Hustle, April 20, 2019

The Top 10 photos farmers post on social media,” by Mark Parker, FarmTalk, April 16, 2019


Two Jumps,” by Baxter Black (a poem in the latest column),,  April 17, 2019

Creative expressions: verses by local poets,” Lake County Record-Bee, April 17, 2019

A Star-Studded 2019 Western Heritage Awards,” by Dana Joseph, Cowboys & Indians magazine, April 16, 2019

House to consider Day of Cowboy one more time,” by Phil Drake, Great Falls Tribune, April 16, 2019

Cowboy poetry a family affair as young Zirnhelt carries on grandfather’s legacy,” Williams Lake Tribune, April 14, 2019


An Evening of Cowboy Poetry,” The Bungalower, April 12, 2019

House tells Day of Cowboy proposal to hit the trail,” by Phil Drake, Great Falls Tribune, April 10, 2019

The Romantic Cowboy,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  April 9, 2019

The 2019 Cowboy Festival visitor’s guide,” The Signal, April 7, 2019

26th annual Cowboy Festival to offer entertainment, history, food and drinks,” by Caleb Lunetta, The Signal, April 5, 2019


When Poetry Matters: Cattleman, Artist & Poet Sean Sexton Invites Us Onto His Ranch,” by Tania Ortega-Cowan,, April 4, 2019

The Top 10 things the Extension guys don’t fully appreciate about your cows,” by Mark Parker, FarmTalk, April 2, 2019

The Idaho Art Lab is searching for community artwork,” by Victoria Varnedoe,, April 2, 2019

Stories of Hope Flood Out of Nebraska,” by Clinton Griffiths, Drovers, March 29, 2019

Art Beat: Cowboy Artists of America Bring Their Big Show to Fort Worth, Texas,” by Dana Joseph, Cowboys & Indians, March 27, 2019


Barbwire Dispatch, newsletter of the Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association (pdf)

Never go rhyming with a cowboy poet!,” by William Thomas, Niagara This Week, March 29, 2019

40 Feet High and Rising,” by Richard Oswald, Daily Yonder, March 27, 2019


‘Shadow of a Cowboy’ Strikes a Chord in Western Music,” by Jennifer Denison,
Western Horseman, March 28, 2019

Saskatchewan cow gives birth to live quadruplets,” by Sharon Gerein, CBC News, March 29, 2019

Women of the West: Monique Miller,” by Ross Hecox, Western Horseman, March 27, 2019

The Gift,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  March 25, 2019

More floods loom as high river waters recede in Midwest,” by Karen Dillon, Reuters, March 25, 2019

From Cow Camp to House Keys,” by Jolyn Young, Western Horseman, March 22, 2019


Kansas Cowboy Poetry Contest two qualifying events and finals


More floods loom as high river waters recede in Midwest,” by Karen Dillon, Reuters, March 25, 2019

Rural America and a Tale of Two Columnists,” by Tim Marema, Daily Yonder, March 25, 2019

Introducing ‘Can-Do Cowkids’ for young readers,” by Amanda Radke,  Agweek,  March 24, 2019

Bernadette Ducharme voted the 2019 Keeper of the West,” by Patrick Davies, Williams Lake Tribune, March 22, 2019

Song Premiere: Andy Hedges’ ‘Shadow of a Cowboy’,” by Hunter Hauk, Cowboys & Indians, March 21, 2019

Gettin’ Deep & Wide with Andy Wilkinson: Live on High Plains Morning,” by Jenny Inzerillo,, March  21, 2019

Floodwaters threaten millions in crop and livestock losses,” by David Pitt and Margery Beck, AP, March 20, 2019

The Rookie DVM,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  March 19, 2019

BLM Will Pay You $1,000 To Adopt A Wild Horse,” by Amanda Peacher, Wyoming Public Media, March 13, 2019

Kevin Martini-Fuller: Portraits of The Gathering at Webster University


Wit and Wisdom at the 35th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Sean McCoy, LA Review of Books, March 17, 2019

Kamloops Cowboy Festival celebrates the western way of life,” by Jill Sperling,, March 15, 2019

Where cowboys still roam, from Tombstone to Deadwood,” by Sara Cagle, L.A. Times, March 15, 2019

Glendale Folk & Heritage Festival celebrates 30 Years,” by Bette Sharpe,, March 15, 2019

It will be a long process for Nebraska farmers and ranchers to recover from snow and flooding,” by Rachel Gabel,  The Fence Post, March 15, 2019

Palo Duro Canyon,” by Christine Hamilton, Western Horseman, March 14, 2019


Singing for Spurs,” by Rod Miller, blog, March 13, 2019

Focusing on history of Virgin Valley Settlement,” by VRobison, Moapa Valley Progress, March 13, 2019

Events Celebrate M.V. Days,” by VRobison, Moapa Valley Progress, March 13, 2019

Born Again Cowboy on the Steppe,” with Ryan T. Bell, 22.33 Podcast, March 11, 2019

Caprock Chronicles: The King of the Cowboys: Roy Rogers’ Hungry Life on the
Llano Estacado,” by Chuck Lanehart,, March 9, 2019

The capital of the Western art world in late March is Great Falls, Montana,” by Mark Bedor, Cowboys & Indians, March 1, 2019


The Hunter’s Son,” a poem by Baxter Black (latest column),,  March 11, 2019

Kamloops Cowboy Festival about to celebrate 23 years,” by Jill Hayward, barrierestarjournal, March 8, 2019


Work Songs of the Cowboy Poets,” photographs by Aubrey Trinnaman, text by Jared Stanley, produced by Eve Lyons, New York Times, March 9, 2019

International Women’s Day: Women in ag defying stereotypes,” (video), AgDaily, March 8, 2018


Dom Flemons reclaims his western heritage with Black Cowboys,” by Eric Volmers, Calgary Herald, March 6, 2019

Pull My Finger,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  March 5, 2019

The Book of the Horse: Horses in Art,” by Susan Morrison, Western Horseman, March 5, 2019

Western Writers of America Spur Awards winners  March 5, 2019

The Top 10 cold-as-heck symptoms,” by Mark Parker, FarmTalk, March 5, 2019


I didn’t want a 70th birthday party. I wanted poetry and cowboys in the desert,” by Isabel Healy, The Irish Times, March 1, 2019

Barbwire Dispatch (pdf)  Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association, February, 2019

Cowboy lifestyle on stage at this years Rendezvous,” by Rod Boam,, February 28, 2019

Grafting Calves,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  February 26, 2019

Cultural connection: Cowboy Rendezvous gears up with school outreach,” by Irma Mora,, Febrary 26, 2019


Loma rancher honored for cowboy prose,” by Erin McIntyre, The Daily Sentinel, February 24, 2019

Terry Nash Cowboy Poetry,” (video) by Chancey Bush, The Daily Sentinel, February 24, 2019

Texas Music Revolution & Rodeo 2019,” by Jeff Campbell, Plano Magazine, February 25, 2019


Yodel-ay-hee-hoo! It’s Wylie!,” by David Rogers, Yakima Herald-Republic, February 20, 2019

The Top 10 observations on winter weather,” by Mark Parker, FarmTalk, February 19, 2019

Australian cattle survived years of drought. Then came the deadly floods.” by  Kristine Phillips, The Washington Post, February 14, 2019

Art Gallery: Bill Anton, by Chuck Thompson,” Cowboys & Indians, February 14, 2019


What happens when you put cowboys in a room to talk politics?,” by Carson Vaughan, The Guardian, February 19, 2019


Cowboy Cartoonists,” by Baxter Black (latest column),,  February 18, 2019

Ranch Horse News (e-zine), Western Horseman, Spring 2019

A Cowboy and His Poem,” by Jay Nordlinger, National Review, February 18, 2019

Celebrating cowboy culture in Nevada,” by Liz Beddall, cangeotravel, February 14, 2019

How This Trailblazing Navajo Cowboy Made Professional Rodeo History,” Vice, February 12 2019

Ross and Lynne Knox return to Arizona to manage a historic ranch on the border of Arizona” (video), Western Horseman, January 29, 2019

Winter Whimpers,” by Kelli Neubert, Western Horseman, January 29, 2019


The black cowboys of Mississippi – in pictures,” by Sarah Gilbert, The Guardian, February 15, 2009

Miles City Cowboy Poetry Gathering 2019,”, February 15, 2019

Ninepipes Art Group Fundraiser Fills Leon Hall,” by Carolyn Hidy, Lake County Leader,
February 14, 2019

Tall Tales Told At The Mesquite Western Roundup,” by V. Robison, Catherine Ellerton,, February 13, 2019

BC Cowboy Heritage Society Newsletter,” (Kamloops info)   February, 2019

Western faces,” by Josie Glassberg,, February 12, 2019


Ian Tyson Tribute (updated video) Western Folklife Center, February 14, 2019

These Honored Dead,” by Rod Miller, blog, February 14, 2019


Cowboy Crossroads with Andy Hedges,”  tribute to S. Omar Barker with Georgia Snead and Waddie Mitchell, Cowboy Crossroads, February 12, 2019


Cow Attack,” by Baxter Black (a poem in the latest column),,  February 13, 2019

‘Tinder for cows’ matches livestock in the mood for love,” by Matthew Stock, Reuters, February 13, 2019

High Lonesome: A Dispatch from the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Michael Ursell,, February 13, 2019


Ramblin’ Jack – Beyond the Music” film trailer

Hirsch’s Meat Market,” by Jeff Campbell, Plano Magazine, February 11, 2019

Meet The Grammy-Nominated Singer Reclaiming Folk Music’s Black History,” by Ja’han Jones,, February 10, 2019

4Eagle Ranch presents romance of Western music and cowboy poetry,” by Pam Boyd,, February 9, 2019


Bringing News Back from the Dead,” by Dave Skinner,, February 6, 2019

Lies They Tell Writers, Part 48: The only way to learn to write is to write,” by Rod Miller (blog), February 5, 2019

Friends honor Ian Tyson at cowboy poetry gathering,” by Toni R. Milano, Elko Daily, February 5, 2019


Bentley, The Born Again Bull,” by Baxter Black (the latest column),,  February 4, 2019

New Cowboy Poet Pays Homage To History,” by Holly Hutchings,, February 3, 2019


2019 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering: Ian Tyson Tribute (YouTube)

2019 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering YouTube Channel 

Winter Whimpers,” by Kelli Neubert, Western Horseman, January 29, 2019


R.W. Hampton arrives in Elko for Ian Tyson show,” by Toni R. Milano, Elko Daily, February 1, 2019

Comic art comes to life at cowboy poetry gathering,” by Toni R. Milano, Elko Daily, February 1, 2019

Regional cowboy poetry gathering, Feb. 24,” Ekalaka Eagle, February 1, 2019

Poetry, peering into the mirror,” by Cynthia Delaney, Elko Daily, February 1, 2019

Keynote address personifies Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Suzanne Featherston,  Elko Daily, January 31, 2019

Cowboy Poetry Hits The Right Notes Once Again,” by Bob Fenske,, January 31, 2019

A Gathering of Cowboy Poets,” by Bill Reynolds, Western Horseman, January 29, 2019


Poems on the range: the annual Cowboy Poetry Gathering wrangles writers from all over, including Canada,” by Vanessa Greco, CBC Radio, January 28, 2019

Film festival kicks off during Gathering,” by Cynthia Delaney, Elko Daily,  January 28, 2019

CPU Pioneer Heritage Award,” (Rod Miller), by Rod Miller (blog), January 27, 2019


Cowboy Poet Honored” (Terry Nash), by Colette Bordelon, Western Slope Now, January 28, 2019


Portraits of the Gathering  photography by Kevin Martin-Fuller and audio poems from the Western Folklife Center’s 35th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering


I Found Myself in Elko,” by John Dofflymyer, Dry Crik Journal (blog), January 28, 2019

Cowboy’s Grace,” by Baxter Black (a poem in the latest column),,  January 28, 2019

Gathering Magic: 35 Years of Cowboy Poetry,” by Suzanne Featherston, Elko Daily, January 25, 2019

Workshop gathers veterans to write, work through pasts,” by Toni R. Milano, Elko Daily,  January 25, 2019

Ranching families on Cheyenne River Reservation face a choice…” by Kenneth Dickerman, Emily Schiffer, Dawnee LeBeau and Sylvia Picotte, Washington Post, January 25, 2019

Arts commission wants to up fellowship odds for folk artists,” by Keith Ridler, Associated Press, January 25, 2019

Cowboy Poetry events at GBC,” Elko Daily Free Press, January 24, 2019

Riverdale poet will read his work on stage at National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Nevada,” by Rich Brown, Hub, January 24, 2019


National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Thea Prieto, Poets & Writers, January/February 2019


Ol’ Roanie,” by Baxter Black in the latest column,,  January 22, 2019

A home, home on the range in Golden for Wild West artistry,” by Christina Steadman, Arvada Press, January 21, 2019

As Colorado urbanizes, rural ranch life celebrated at annual Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” by Elise Schmelzer, The Denver Post, January 21, 2019

The way my grandpa sees the world,” by Jessie Veeder, Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch (blog), January 21, 2019

Video Exclusive: A Red Steagall Poem for Justin Boots,” by Kristin Brown, Cowboys & Indians, January, 2019

Made in the U.S.A.,” by Bill Reynolds, Western Horseman, January 2, 2019


Prejudice,” by Baxter Black in the latest column,,  January 15, 2019

Rodeo Alaska cow evades capture wandering Anchorage trails,” apnews, January 15,

Song Writer’s Notebook with Andy Hedges (video), by Rik Palieri, January 13, 2019

National Cowboy Poetry Gathering,” The Hans India, January 13, 2019

Museums of Western Colorado brings history, science, adventure to its outings,” by Ann Wright, Grand Junction Sentinel, January 12, 2019

Windows into the past,” by Cynthia Delaney, Elko Daily Free Press, January 12, 2019

Female Ranchers Are Reclaiming the American West,” by Amy Chozick, New York Times, January 11, 2019

Bartley Ranch Regional Park kicks off 2019 music series,”, January 9, 2019

Cowboy Poetry to return to Mesquite in February,” by V. Robison,, January 9, 2019

Riding Sloppy,” by Kelli Neubert, Western Horseman, January 8, 2019

Walk Ride Rodeo,” by Dana Joseph, Cowboys & Indians, January 8, 2019


Cowboy Crossroads with Andy Hedges,”  with Corb Lund, Cowboy Crossroads, January 8, 2019

The Make-Up Of Ice,” by Paul Zarzyski, blog, January 8, 2019

It takes a ranch…,”by Dawn Wink, Dewdrops blog, January 7, 2019

How to Make a Bucking Bull: Good Breeding and, Just Maybe, a Cow’s Love,” by James Gorman, New York Times, January 5, 2019

Things to do in Butte,” Montana Standard, January 4, 2019

Temple Grandin reveals her two greatest fears to Georgia 4-H members,” by Sadie
Lackey,, January 4, 2019


The Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering Is Celebrating Its 30th Anniversary,” by Madeline Taub, 5280, January 2019


That Time of Year,” by John Dofflemyer, Dry Crik  Journal blog, January 2, 2019




by Jane Morton (1931-2020)

I hear the windmills creak and squeak
As wheels turned toward the wind.
Those mills pumped water for the stock
On which our hopes were pinned.

The sucker rods moved up and down
While wheels spun round and round.
They sucked the fossil water up
For use above the ground.

The windmills made life possible
On flat and dry terrain.
They kept the stock tanks well-supplied
Despite infrequent rain.

To us those wooden windmills were
The pyramids of the plains
More monumental than the ones
That held pharos’ remains.

My family, too, faced winds head on–
The winds of chance and change,
The winds that blew with blizzard force
And howled across the range.

And like the windmills on our ranch,
We anchored to that place
Until the winds became so strong
They ripped us from our base.

© 2003, Jane Morton
This poem should not be reposted or reprinted without permission.

With great sadness, we learned that popular poet Jane Morton died on February 16, 2020.

As we’ve written elsewhere, Jane wrote poetry and prose about her family’s ranch history, which began with her great great grandfather, a circuit-riding Baptist minister who left Illinois and headed to Colorado in 1872. Generations later, her mother, Eva Lena Ambrose, was surprised to discover that her husband, a teacher and coach, was determined to return to the family farm that eventually became the family ranch. Her mother faced a harder-than-expected life with dignity.

Jane Morton shared this photo taken at her family’s ranch in Colorado in the 1970s or 1980s and told us that the photo was “… of the calving shed, which is part of a larger pasture outside the fence where, in November, they bring in the heifers who are going to be calving for the winter… The corrals there are used during branding. There is a big brush pile, most of it out of view, that provides shelter for the cattle during the winter storms… ”


In her award-winning book, Turning to Face the Wind, Jane Morton includes the photo of the same shed, “and the heifers and calves that have been rounded up for branding. The heifers will be separated from the calves and turned out to pasture where they will stand by the fence calling for their calves… In the book, the photo accompanies her poem, “The Cows Came First,” that ends with a wry observation about her mother, a reluctant ranch wife:

Dad bought one stone for both of them,
and he had it engraved.
A cow and windmill took the place
of flowers she had craved.

When mother said the cows came first;
she knew my dad too well.
Above her final resting place,
that cow will always dwell.


A detail from the photo is used as the cover and within the 2007 edition of Deep West videos, from the Western Folklife Center. The videos are a collection of films made by ranch families, “first-hand stories from the rural West that are rooted in the values of life on the land.”

Watch that Deep West video and hear Jane recite “Turning to Face the Wind” and another poem and tell about the windmills, her father and his tractor, and about aspects of the ranch that have changed over time.

The video was also aired on the Rocky Mountain Public Broadcasting Network along with other films in its Real Colorado series.

Jane made two other Deep West videos, one with her poem “Branding” and great photos, and another, “At the Edge of the Aquifer,” about a cowboy living on the Ambrose ranch in Colorado and the water issues he faces.

Find more about Jane Morton and more of her poetry at

Jane Morton’s talents and cheerful presence will be missed greatly. We are fortunate to have her poems, stories, and recordings.

JaneMorton2003 (1)



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Jane Ambrose Morton, 1931-2020

JaneMorton2003 (1)

We’re sad to report the death of popular poet Jane Morton, a friend to many—and a part of from its earliest days. Her husband, poet and reciter Dick Morton wrote to say that she had died Sunday, February 16, 2020. A memorial service will take place in August at their home in Colorado.

Jane wrote poetry and prose about her family’s ranch history, which began with her great great grandfather, a circuit-riding Baptist minister who left Illinois and headed to Colorado in 1872. Generations later, her mother, Eva Lena Ambrose, was surprised to discover that her husband, a teacher and coach, was determined to return to the family farm that eventually became the family ranch. Her mother faced a harder-than-expected life with dignity.

Each year we launch Cowboy Poetry Week with Jane’s poem that well described her own inspiration for writing:

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, used with permission

Jane stopped performing several years ago. She has award-winning books and a CD of her poetry. Find more about her and some of her poetry and ranch history at

Email if you’d like contact information for Dick Morton.

FIFTY A DAY, by DW Groethe


photo © Jessica Lifland

by DW Groethe

Fifty a day is a cowboy’s pay
It ain’t much, tho for some it’s enough.
It’s not always money
That rides a man hard
Or acquirin’ piles a stuff.

There are those who would willingly
Trade it all in
For a chance to go ridin’ the herd.
Bein’ out in the lonesome
Not feelin’ alone—
That’s somethin’ you can’t put in words.

No—This is one a them things
That money can’t buy, tho
They wouldn’t say no to a raise,
You can sure bet
They’ll give more’n they get
An’ be happy til the end a their days.

‘Cause bein’ a cowboy
Is like sayin’ “I’m broke.”
A purty good chunk a the time.
But broke ain’t a shame
It’s a part a the game,
Just a fool thinks broke is a crime.

An’ for sure it’s no sweat
The hours they get
Will sometimes be tired an’long.
But when they hit the hay,
At the end a’ the day,
What they earned is the sweetest of songs.

Oh, there’s always those times
When the best that you do
Simply will not be enough.
There are things in this world
That’ll flat make you blue
But that’s life an’ sometimes it’s rough.

Fifty a day a cowboy’s pay
More than enough for a few
Who heed not the call
Of that ol’ nine to five
An’ they’ll laugh around broke,
Tired an’ blue.

© 2002, DW Groethe
This poem should not be reprinted or reposted without permission

Montana ranch hand, poet, and picker DW Groethe includes this poem on his Tales from West River album and in his book, West River Waltz. Andy Hedges recites the poem on his latest Cowboy Crossroads podcast, which includes an interview with DW Groethe, recorded last month at the Western Folklife Center’s National Cowboy Poetry Gathering.

In the interview, DW talks about writing songs and poetry, how he came to work as a ranch hand, and more. Find the interview here, along with many other compelling interviews with people who “share stories and discuss music, poetry, and culture from the working cowboy West and beyond.”

DW performs his poetry and music at venues small and large. He’s appeared many times at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, and has been invited to the the National Council for the Traditional Arts (NCTA), The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, The Library of Congress, and other places. He has books and recordings. Find more about him at

This photograph of DW Groethe is by respected photojournalist Jessica Lifland (; jblif on Instagram) as a part of her Cowboy Poetry Project. Other subjects to date include Sean Sexton, Andy Hedges, Jerry Brooks, Waddie Mitchell, Amy Steiger and Gail Steiger, Rodney Nelson, Elizabeth Ebert, Henry Real Bird, Doris Daley, Bimbo Cheney, Jack Walther, and others.

Jessica Lifland is one of the official photographers for the Western Folklife Center’s National Cowboy Poetry Gathering. Find her gathering photos and her Cowboy Poetry Project photos at

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by S. Omar Barker (1894-1985)

Now young Jack Potter was a man
who knowed the ways of steers.
From bur-nests in their hairy tails
to ticks that chawed their ears.

A Texican and cowhand,
to the saddle bred and born,
He could count a trail herd on the move
and never miss a horn.

But one day on a tally,
back in eighteen-eighty-four,
He got to acting dreamy,
and he sure did miss the score.

The Trail Boss knowed the symptoms.
“Jack you ain’t no good like this.
I’ll give you just ten days
to go and find what is amiss!”

A “miss” was just what ailed him,
for he’d fell in love for sure
With a gal named Cordie Eddy,
mighty purty, sweet and pure.

So now Jack rode a hundred miles,
a-sweatin’ with the thought
Of sweetsome words to ask her with,
the way a fella ought.

“I’m just a humble cowhand,
Miss Cordie, if you please,
That hereby asks your heart and hand,
upon my bended knees!.”

It sounded mighty simple
thus rehearsed upon the trail.
But when he come to Cordie’s house,
his words all seemed to fail.

‘Twas “Howdy, ma’am, and how’s the crops?
And “How’s your pa and ma?”
For when it came to askin’ her,
he couldn’t come to taw.

He took her to a dance one night.
The hoss she rode was his.
“He’s a dandy little hoss,” she says.
“Well, yep,” says Jack, “he is.”

They rode home late together
and the moon was ridin’ high,
And Jack, he got to talkin’
’bout the stars up in the sky,

And how they’d guide a trail herd
like they do sea-goin’ ships.
But words of love and marriage—
they just wouldn’t pass his lips!

So he spoke about the pony
she was ridin’, and he said:
“You’ll note he’s fancy-gaited,
and don’t never fight his head.”

“He’s sure a little dandy,” she agrees,
and heaves a sigh.
Jack says, “Why you can have him—
that is—maybe—when I die.”

He figgered she might savvy
what he meant or maybe guess,
And give him that sweet answer
which he longed for, namely, “yes.”

But when they reached the ranch house,
he was still a-wonderin’ how
He would ever pop the question,
and he had to do it now.

Or wait and sweat and suffer
till the drive was done that fall,
When maybe she’d be married,
and he’d lose her after all.

He put away her saddle,
led his pony to the gate:
“I reckon I’ll be driftin’, ma’am.
It’s gittin’ kinder late.”

Her eyes was bright as starlight,
and her lips looked sweet as flow’rs.
Says Jack, “Now, this here pony—
is he mine, or is he ours?”

“Our pony, Jack!” she answered,
and her voice was soft as moss.
Then Jack, he claims he kissed her—
but she claims he kissed the hoss!

© 1966, S. Omar Barker, from Rawhide Rhymes, reprinted with the permission of the estate of S. Omar Barker

It’s become a sort of tradition here to share this poem for Valentine’s Day.

S. Omar Barker’s poem is based on the real-life romance of trail driver and storyteller Jack Potter and Cordelia Eddy. In July, 2006, we received correspondence from Georganna Kresl, great granddaughter of “Jack” and “Cordie,” commenting on the poem about her great-grandparents.

She wrote, “…Though Jack Potter may be best known as a trail driver, throughout his life he was first and foremost a story teller—an oral historian in the folk tradition. After he retired from the range, sold his ranch, and moved into the town of Clayton, New Mexico (1928), Potter wrote down some of his personal recollections, entered them in a contest sponsored by the Pioneer State Tribune and, astonishingly, was awarded second place. The result was that, though in his 60’s at the time, Jack Potter coincidentally created a new career for himself as a writer…

“Though Potter wrote primarily for Western magazines and newspapers, he also published two books, Cattle Trails of the Old West (1935, 1939) and Lead Steer and Other Tales (1939). In the third chapter of Lead Steer, titled  “Courtship and Engagement,” Jack talks about how he and Cordie met and tells about proposing to her. Barker must have been familiar with this story through his association with Potter during the ’30s, because the heart of Potter’s narrative version of events forms the basis for Barker’s poem; in effect, Barker translated Potter’s prose into verse. The resulting rhyme was then subsequently printed in Ranch Romances in September 1941.”

Find much more and a photo of Cordie and her children at

Top reciter Randy Rieman presents “Jack Potter’s Courtin'” in a delightful way on MASTERS: VOLUME TWO, the poetry of S. Omar Barker.

Barker was one of the founders of the Western Writers of America, Inc. and many of his poems were published by Western Horseman. Find more about S. Omar Barker at

Find more cowboy love poems for Valentine’s Day at

This c. 1907 postcard image is from the BAR-D collection.

(Please respect copyright. You can share this poem with this post, but for any other uses, request permission.)