COLD MORNIN’S, by Bruce Kiskaddon

coldmorninsyh

COLD MORNIN’S
by Bruce Kiskaddon (1878-1950)

I been out in the weather since I was a boy,
But cold mornin’s is sumthin’ a man cain’t enjoy.
It makes me feel like I wanted to quit
When I ketch up my pony and thaw out my bit.

There ain’t any cow puncher needs to be told
That my saddle is stiff and the leather is cold.
The blankets is froze and the hoss shakes like jelly
When you the pull the old frozen cinch up on his belly.

He snorts and he’s got a mean look in the eye.
He is humped till the back of the saddle stands high.
He ain’t in no humor to stand fer a joke,
But I belt on my chaps and I light me a smoke.

There may be some trouble between me and him.
It is like goin’ into cold water to swim.
It gives me a sort of shivver and scare
But once I git started; well then I don’t care.

…by Bruce Kiskaddon, 1937

Kiskaddon has a number of cold weather poems, no doubt inspired by his cowboying years in Colorado. This poem appeared in the “Western Livestock Journal” and on the Los Angeles Union Stockyards calendar.

Find more about Bruce Kiskaddon at CowboyPoetry.com.

This photograph is from top cowboy poet, South Dakota rancher, and quilt champion Yvonne Hollenbeck. It was taken a few years ago, and she commented, “Ahh, the life of a ranchwife in South Dakota in winter. We just scooped two long lines of bunks (wet heavy snow) so we could feed the calves…That was just half of ’em in the picture. We feed ground feed into the bunks. I think there’s two rows of 11.”

Yvonne is headed to the Western Folklife Center’s 35th annual National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, January 28-February 2, 2019 in Elko, Nevada. Find more at nationalcowboypoetrygathering.org.

Find more about Yvonne Hollenbeck at cowboypoetry.com and at yvonnehollenbeck.com.

Stay tuned for our forthcoming MASTERS: VOLUME THREE multi-disc CD with the poems of Bruce Kiskaddon. Find more about the MASTERS series here.

(You can share this photo with this post, but please request permission for other uses. The poem is in the public domain.)

THE HELPMATE, by Yvonne Hollenbeck

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THE HELPMATE
by Yvonne Hollenbeck

You say I look disgusted
but you took me by surprise,
and I suppose there was resentment
coming from my eyes.

Since that hired man left us
I’ve been more than just his wife;
I’m the helper by his side
as he continues ranching life.

I get the gates and scoop the bunks
and help with feeding hay,
and that is just the start
of all the jobs I do each day.

I’m right there for the calving
and I help with all the chores,
then try to catch my work up
when I get some time indoors.

You see, I run and jump
each time he gives a little yelp,
and it galls me that you ask
how he is doing “with no help.”

© 2014, Yvonne Hollenbeck, used with permission.
Yvonne Hollenbeck is cowboy poetry’s most visible ranch wife, and her life gives her endless material. She is a sought-after performer at Western events, for her poetry and for her traveling program that includes the works of the five generations of quilt makers in her family. She is a champion quilter.

Yvonne and and her husband Glen, a champion calf-roper, raise cattle and quarter horses on their ranch in Clearfield, South Dakota.

In fairness to Glen, the poem came about after he was the one who told Yvonne about someone who, even after Glen had said Yvonne was helping out, went on to ask how he did everything “with no help.”

This photo of Glen Hollenbeck is from 2017. Yvonne wrote, “Here’s a picture of a couple good ol’ boys. Glen stopped to visit Paddy’s Irish Whiskey at the 6666 Ranch at Guthrie, Texas, and thank him for the great addition to Glen’s G2 horse collection…I mean “horse program.”

This poem is in Yvonne Hollenbeck’s recent book, Rhyming the Range, which collects her original poems about her life on the ranch. The book includes the most requested poems from her two out-of-print books and all of her newest poetry. She also has a CD by the same name that includes many of those poems.

She has a busy cowboy poetry event schedule in the next few months:

Catch Yvonne this weekend at the 9th annual Black Hills Cowboy Christmas at the Historic Homestake Opera House in Lead, South Dakota, adjacent to Deadwood. She’ll be joined by Chuck Larsen, Trinity Seely, and others. Find more at .

Find Yvonne at the Colorado Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Golden, January 17-20, 2019. The lineup includes Jerry Brooks, Jon Chandler, Connie Dover, Mark Gardner & Rex Rideout, Kristyn Harris, Carol Huechan, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Chuck Larsen, Gary McMahan, John Nelson, New West, Jean Prescott, Dave Stamey, Pop Wagner, Barry Ward, and Dick Warwick.

She’ll be at the Western Folklife Center’s 35th annual National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada, January 28-February 2, 2019. See the roster of performers in our Monday post and find information at nationalcowboypoetrygathering.com.

Yvonne returns as a headliner to the 33rd annual Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Alpine, February 22-23, 2019. The Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering lineup includes Apache Adams, Gary Allegretto, Amy Hale Auker, Eli Barsi, Floyd Beard, “Straw” Berry, Mike Blakely, Dale Burson, Don Cadden, Bob Campbell, Craig Carter, Zack Casey, Allan Chapman & Rodeo Kate, Justin Cole, High Country Cowboys, Doris Daley, Mikki Daniel, John Davis, Kevin Davis, Doug Figgs, Ray Fitzgerald, Rolf Flake, Ryan & Hoss Fritz, Belinda Gail, Pipp Gillette, Jeff Gore, Kristyn Harris, Andy Hedges, High Country Cowboys, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Randy & Hanna Huston, Chris Isaacs, Jill Jones & Three Hands High, Jim Jones, Linda Kirkpatrick, Ross Knox, Daron Little, Deanna Dickinson McCall, Pat Meade, Glenn Moreland, Terry Nash, Joel Nelson, Sam Noble, Kay Nowell, Jean Prescott, Gary Prescott, Mike Querner, Luke Reed, Randy Rieman, Gary Robertson, Trinity Seely, R.P. Smith, Jay Snider, Gail Steiger, Michael Stevens, Caitlyn Taussig, Rod Taylor, Doug Tolleson, Keith Ward, and Jim Wilson.

Find more of Yvonne Hollenbeck’s poetry at CowboyPoetry.com, and visit yvonnehollenbeck.com, which has her appearance dates, including quilt programs.

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

OLD EAGLE EYE, by Yvonne Hollenbeck

oldeagle

OLD EAGLE EYE
by Yvonne Hollenbeck

He can tell if a heifer is starting to calve,
I swear from a mile away,
and see if he needs to go pull the calf
by just simply looking that way.

He can see if a windmill is working or not
from his horse on a faraway hill,
and tell what direction the wind’s coming from
by watching the tail on the mill.

He knows if a coyote or badger is near
by watching the tracks in the sand,
and sees if a staple is loose from a post
on the fence that encircles his land.

He’s got eyes like an eagle for finding new calves
that their mamas have hidden all snug;
so why can’t he see the mud on his boots
that he’s tracking all over my rug?

© 2012, Yvonne Hollenbeck, used with permission.
This poem should not be reposted or reprinted with out the author’s permission

Ranch wife, top poet, and champion quilter Yvonne Hollenbeck and her husband Glen raise cattle and quarter horses on their ranch in Clearfield, South Dakota.

Glen, a champion calf-roper and the subject of many of her poems, is pictured here.

Find Yvonne emceeing at the Dakota Western Heritage Festival in Ft. Pierre, South Dakota, September 14-16, 2018. Poets and musicians include Robert Dennis, Marty Blocker, R.P. Smith, Jake Riley, Colt Blankman, and others. Find more about the event on Facebook.

In October, she’s featured at the Red Steagall Cowboy Gathering, October 26-28, 2018 in Fort Worth, Texas along with Red Steagall, “Straw” Berry, Mikki Daniel, Don Edwards, Bobby Flores, Kristyn Harris, Jake Hooker, Chris Isaacs, Jean Prescott, Dan Roberts, Leon Rausch, Hailey Sandoz, and Jay Snider.

In January, she returns to the Western Folklife Center’s National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada, January 28 through February 2, 2019. Find more about the event and see the great lineup at nationalcowboypoetrygathering.org.

Yvonne Hollenbeck’s recent book, Rhyming the Range, and CD by the same name, collect her original poems about her life on the ranch. The book includes the most requested poems from her two out-of-print books and all of her newest poetry.

Find more of Yvonne Hollenbeck’s poetry at CowboyPoetry.com and visit YvonneHollenbeck.com.

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

I’D LIKE TO BE IN TEXAS (WHEN WE ROUND UP COWS NEXT SPRING), by Yvonne Hollenbeck

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I’D LIKE TO BE IN TEXAS (WHEN WE ROUND UP COWS NEXT SPRING)
by Yvonne Hollenbeck

There’s been a lot of poems and songs
about those cattle drives,
but I’ve never heard a poem or song
about those cowmen’s wives.

Did you ever stop and wonder
about how those guys get fed?
Who boils that brew and cooks the stew
and bakes up all that bread?

Well, I know who and so do you,
so I wrote this little thing
’bout why I’d like to be in Texas
when we round up cows next spring.

IT GOES LIKE THIS:

In a kitchen in an old ranch house on a cold and autumn day,
sat a bunch of fellers telling yarns about the cowboy way.

They tell of places they have been and country they have seen.
One prefers the Badlands where the grass is never green,

while others tell their windy tales of Sandhills, lush and wet,
as they eat their eggs and pancakes ‘cause it soon is time to get

outside and saddle up their mounts and ready for the ride,
for the roundup is about to start. I too must get outside

and load up all the food and drink and pack it in my truck,
then find a place along the trail where they can stop for chuck.

I’m soon unloading food supplies…it’s not an easy deal
to feed those men while on the trail and plan for every meal.

And when the noon meal’s over, the work is never through;
you have to clean and pack and move the meal site all anew.

They’ll stop the drive at sundown and again they have to eat,
and then I start all over and I’m really getting beat!

They set up camp and bed ‘em tight, some men stay with the cattle;
I head on home to pack more food, for eating’s half the battle.

And while the men are fast asleep, I prepare tomorrow’s menu;
just two more days of rounding up and then this job will be through.

So when you hear those poems and songs about those cattle drives,
just think about the “unsung” ones…’bout the cowman’s wives.

With that I guess I’ll bid “good-bye” and say just one more thing:
I’d sure like to be in Texas when we round up cows next spring!

© 2008, revised, Yvonne Hollenbeck
This poem should not be reposted or reprinted without permission

Popular cowboy poet and champion quilter Yvonne Hollenbeck delights audiences across the West. Here her latest book and CD are Rhyming the Range. Both collect her original poems. The book includes the most requested poems from her two out-of-print books and all of her newest poetry.

Yvonne is a part of the must-see film, Everything in the Song is True, Doug Morrione’s award-winning feature-length documentary “of four iconic western characters”: Gary McMahan, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Brice Chapman, and Greg Nourse. Find more about the film at everythinginthesongistrue.com and on Facebook.  It’s now available to stream at Amazon.

Find more about Yvonne Hollenbeck and her complete schedule, which includes quilting events, at yvonnehollenbeck.com.

Find more of Yvonne Hollenbeck’s poetry at CowboyPoetry.com.

This photo of twin bull calves was taken in 2016 at the Hollenbeck’s South Dakota ranch, where Yvonne and her champion calf-roper husband Glen raise cattle and quarter horses. Read a recent article about Glen, “Glen Hollenbeck: Still riding for the G2 Brand,” by Hannah Johlman at the Tri-State Livestock News.

(Please respect copyright. You can share this poem and photo with this post, but for other uses, please ask permission.)

THE BANKER AND THE INSURANCE MAN by Yvonne Hollenbeck

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THE BANKER AND THE INSURANCE MAN
by Yvonne Hollenbeck

When the banker pays a visit
to check your inventory,
the way he figures assets
is quite a different story
than the values placed upon them
by the one who sells insurance;
and if those two would switch their jobs,
it’d really make a difference.

The first thing that the banker does
is want to claim your land.
He says it isn’t worth too much,
but on the other hand
he needs it for security
’cause the cattle market’s down,
but he can’t loan you cash on it,
’cause it is only land.

The value of your cattle
is the price the packer pays;
your machinery isn’t worth a darn,
it’s seen its better days.
You can’t borrow on your good old horse,
you can’t borrow on your wife;
your house ain’t worth a tinker’s damn,
and neither is your life.

But here comes your insurance man,
he sings a different song.
He says your horse is worth a lot!
You knew that all along.
He says you need a policy
just in case it meets its fate,
and you’d better get a big one
on your kind and loving mate.

He says, “She’s worth a million
if you figured up the cost
of hiring folks to do her work;
without her you’d be lost.
And if lightning hit some cattle,
the loss would be immense;
heck, you’ve got a hundred thousand
in just windmills, tanks and fence.”

When that agent finished tallying,
it looked like we were wealthy;
the way he figures assets
make your finances look quite healthy.
So, I hope you see my point of them
switching jobs, you see
‘cause if bankers sold insurance,
not very much there’d be,

But if insurance agents started
making agriculture loans,
we’d all be driving brand new cars
and living in new homes.
We’d be looking pretty prosperous
and live a rich man’s life
and instead of buying life insurance,
you’d just mortgage one good wife!

© 2012, Yvonne Hollenbeck
This poem should not be reprinted or reposted without permission

Popular cowboy poet and champion quilter Yvonne Hollenbeck includes this poem in her recent book, Rhyming the Range, and a CD by the same name. Both collect her original poems about her life on the ranch. The book includes the most requested poems from her two out-of-print books and all of her newest poetry.

In coming months, find Yvonne at the Western Folklife Center’s 34th annual National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada, January 29-February 3, 2018 and the 32nd annual Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Alpine, March 2-3, 2018.

March 20-24, 2018 she’ll be at Pigeon Forge’s Mountain Quiltfest in Tennessee. She and Jean Prescott will present programs, including Yvonne’s trunk show, “Patchwork of the Prairie,” along with poetry and music. Yvonne’s family collection of 40 quilts spans 140 years and includes her own prize-winning works. Yvonne’s fellow ranchwife and celebrated quilter, Vi Colombe, will also be at Quiltfest.

Yvonne is featured in the multiple award-winning Everything in the Song is True, Doug Morrione’s award-winning feature-length documentary film “of four iconic western characters” (Gary McMahan, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Brice Chapman, and Greg Nourse). Find more about the film at everythinginthesongistrue.com and on Facebook.

Find Yvonne’s complete schedule, which includes quilting events and more, at yvonnehollenbeck.com. Find more of Yvonne Hollenbeck’s poetry at CowboyPoetry.com.

This is a photo of the Hollenbeck’s South Dakota ranch, where Yvonne and her champion calf-roper husband Glen raise cattle and quarter horses.

COLD MORNIN’S by Bruce Kiskaddon (1878-1950)

coldmorninsyh

 

COLD MORNIN’S
by Bruce Kiskaddon (1878-1950)

I been out in the weather since I was a boy,
But cold mornin’s is sumthin’ a man cain’t enjoy.
It makes me feel like I wanted to quit
When I ketch up my pony and thaw out my bit.

There ain’t any cow puncher needs to be told
That my saddle is stiff and the leather is cold.
The blankets is froze and the hoss shakes like jelly
When you the pull the old frozen cinch up on his belly.

He snorts and he’s got a mean look in the eye.
He is humped till the back of the saddle stands high.
He ain’t in no humor to stand fer a joke,
But I belt on my chaps and I light me a smoke.

There may be some trouble between me and him.
It is like goin’ into cold water to swim.
It gives me a sort of shivver and scare
But once I git started; well then I don’t care.

…by Bruce Kiskaddon, 1937

Kiskaddon has a number of cold weather poems, no doubt inspired by his cowboying years in Colorado. This poem appeared in the “Western Livestock Journal” and on the Los Angeles Union Stockyards calendar.

Find more about Bruce Kiskaddon at CowboyPoetry.com.

This photograph is from top cowboy poet, South Dakota rancher, and quilt champion Yvonne Hollenbeck. It was taken a couple of years ago, and she commented on a Facebook post, “Ahh, the life of a ranchwife in South Dakota in winter. We just scooped two long lines of bunks (wet heavy snow) so we could feed the calves…That was just half of ’em in the picture. We feed ground feed into the bunks. I think there’s two rows of 11.”

Find more about Yvonne Hollenbeck at CowboyPoetry.com and at her site, yvonnehollenbeck.com.

 

 

THE HELPMATE by Yvonne Hollenbeck

helpmate2

THE HELPMATE
by Yvonne Hollenbeck

You say I look disgusted
but you took me by surprise,
and I suppose there was resentment
coming from my eyes.

Since that hired man left us
I’ve been more than just his wife;
I’m the helper by his side
as he continues ranching life.

I get the gates and scoop the bunks
and help with feeding hay,
and that is just the start
of all the jobs I do each day.

I’m right there for the calving
and I help with all the chores,
then try to catch my work up
when I get some time indoors.

You see, I run and jump
each time he gives a little yelp,
and it galls me that you ask
how he is doing “with no help.”

© 2014, Yvonne Hollenbeck
This poem should not be reposted or reprinted without permission

Yvonne Hollenbeck is cowboy poetry’s most visible ranch wife, and her life gives her endless material. She is a sought-after performer at Western events, for her poetry and for her traveling program that includes the works of the five generations of quiltmakers in her family. She is a champion quilter.

Yvonne and and her husband Glen, a champion calf-roper, raise cattle and quarter horses on their ranch in Clearfield, South Dakota.

In fairness to Glen, the poem came about after he told Yvonne about someone who, even after Glen had said Yvonne was helping out, went on to ask how he did everything “with no help.”

This poem is in Yvonne Hollenbeck’s recent book, Rhyming the Range, which collects her original poems about her life on the ranch. The book includes the most requested poems from her two out-of-print books and all of her newest poetry. She also has a CD by the same name that includes many of those poems.

Next month, Yvonne heads to the Red Steagall Cowboy Gathering & Western Swing Festival, October 27-29, 2017 at the Forth Worth Stockyards National Historic District. Events include a ranch rodeo, invitational team roping, chuck wagon competition, wagon train/trail ride, and much more. Yvonne joins other poets and musicians, including Don Edwards, Jay Snider, Jean Prescott, Chris Isaacs, Dan Roberts, “Straw” Berry, Mikki Daniel, Bobby Flores, Kristyn Harris, Jake Hooker, Leon Rausch, Hailey Sandoz, and of course, the great Red Steagall.

Find more about the event at redsteagallcowboygathering.com and on Facebook.

This photo, by Yvonne Hollenbeck, was taken last spring at the Hollenbeck ranch.

Find more of Yvonne Hollenbeck’s poetry at CowboyPoetry.com  and visit YvonneHollenbeck.com.