SKYPE (#don’tgetthispoundsignstuff) by Terry Nash

cowboystexting

photo by Amy Hale Auker; request permission for use

 

SKYPE (#don’tgetthispoundsignstuff)
by Terry Nash

Never thought I’d ever twitter
Nor considered that I’d tweet.
I’ve kept my hashtags to myself
And my sentences complete.

I used to think that Facebook
just happened when in bed
And you’d drifted off mid-paragraph
And yer novel hit yer head.

But, now I have this smart phone
With touch screen and some apps,
And I’m feelin’ sorta trendy
And I figure, just perhaps,

I’ll polish up my ‘tech’-nique;
Succumb to the latest hype,
Clean my hat, brush my ‘stache
And call someone and skype!

I figured just this mornin’
I’d be sure to catch Ol’ Claude.
When he see’s my grinnin’ face
There’s no doubt he’ll be awed!

So I called a little early
To catch him still at home…
Hadn’t ever seen him hatless,
But the glare off his ol’ dome

Plumb blinded me at first!
And when he started into talkin’
He hadn’t stuck his teeth in yet;
It was sorta like he’s squawkin’!

Claude didn’t know we’s skypin’-
Held the phone up just to listen
And I swear I seed plum through him
Confirmin’ my suspicion;

Some cowboys got dang little
‘Twixt their left ear and their right
Next time I skype ol’ Claude
It’ll be in the dark of night!

© 2015, Terry Nash, used with permission
This poem should not be reposted or reprinted without permission.

Colorado rancher, reciter, and poet Terry Nash includes this poem on his new CD, A Good Ride.

Find the complete playlist for A Good Ride here.

Terry makes a return appearance as as invited poet at the Western Folklife Center’s National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada (January 30-February 4, 2018) along with a stellar lineup, including poets, musicians, and dancers: Ardi Baltza, Amy Hale Auker, Mike Beck, Ryan Bell, Muzzie & Willy & Cody Braun, Adrian Buckaroogirl, Caleb Klauder Country Band, Cowboy Celtic, John Dofflemyer, Carolyn Dufurrena, Maria Lisa Eastman, Elko Ariñak, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Dom Flemons & Brian Farrow, Jean Flesher & Amerikanuak, Patricia Frolander, Pipp Gillette, Martin Goicoechea, Jesus Goñi, Kristyn Harris, Andy Hedges, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Rita Hosking & Sean Feder, Oihana Iguaran Barandiaran, Ross Knox, Maialen Lujanbio Zugasti, Betty Lynne McCarthy, Carlton McCord Lewis, Wally McRae, Waddie Mitchell, Mercedes Mendive and Melodikoa, Michael Martin Murphey, Terry Nash, Joel Nelson, Rodney Nelson, Shadd Piehl, Vess Quinlan, Henry Real Bird, Brigid Reedy, Riders in the Sky, Randy Rieman, The Rifters, Matt Robertson, David Romtvedt & Caitlin Belem Romtvedt, Jack Sammon, Sean Sexton, Sand Sheff, Andy Wilkinson, Wylie & the Wild West, and Paul Zarzyski.

The 34th annual National Cowboy Poetry Gathering also includes workshops, films, exhibits, dances, and more. Find more at nationalcowboypoetrygathering.org.

Find Terry also at the Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Alpine, Texas (March 2-3, 2018).

Learn more about Terry Nash at CowboyPoetry.com and about his CDs and more at his web site, terrynashcowboypoet.com.

This photo with DW Groethe and Gail Steiger was taken by writer and cowboy Amy Steiger (Amy Hale Auker) in 2016 at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering. Amy is also featured at Elko. Amy Steiger is the author of four acclaimed books: two novels and two essay collections. Find more about her at AmyHaleAuker.com.

 

A COWBOY’S NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS by S. Omar Barker (1895-1985)

cowboynewyearnash.jpg

A COWBOY’S NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS
by S. Omar Barker (1895-1985)

As one who’s been a cowhand since the wildcats learned to spit,
I’ve made some resolutions for the comin’ year, to wit:
Resolved, to ride a shorter day and sleep a longer night;
To never come to breakfast till the sun is shinin’ bright;
To draw a top-hands wages when they’re due or quit the job
And hunt a wealthy widow or an easy bank to rob.
Resolved, to quit the wagon when the chuck ain’t up to snuff,
To feed no more on bullet beans nor chaw on beef that’s tough.
Resolved, to straddle nothin’ in the line of saddle mount
That ain’t plumb easy-gaited, gentle broke, and some account.

Resolved, that when it blizzards and there’s stock out in the storm,
To let the owner worry while I stay in where it’s warm.
Resolved, that when it comes my turn next spring to ride the bogs,
I’ll don the bib and tucker of my town and Sunday togs,
And tell the boss, by gravies, if he craves to shed some blood,
Just try to make me smear ’em tailin’ moo-cows from the mud.
Resolved, that when a thunderhead comes rollin’ up the sky,
I’ll lope in off my circle to the bunkhouse where it’s dry.

Resolved, to do such ropin’ as a ropin’ cowhand must,
But never when the air ain’t free from cattle-trompled dust.
Resolved to show no hosses, and resolved, to swim no cricks;
Resolved, no dead-cow skinnin’, and resolved, no fence to fix.
Resolved, to swing no pitchfork, no pick, no ax, no spade;
Resolved to wear my whiskers—if I want to—in a braid!
Resolved, to take this New Year plenty easy through-and-through,
Instead of sweatin’ heavy like I’ve always used to do.

As one who’s been a cowhand since before who laid the chunk,
It may sound like I’m loco, or it may sound like I’m drunk
To make such resolutions as you see upon my list,
And others purt near like ’em that my mem’ry may have missed;
But gosh, they sound so pleasant to a son of saddle sweat!
And New Year’s resolutions—well, I never kept one yet!
So why make resolutions that bring furrows to your brow?
Let’s make ’em free and fancy—’cause we’ll bust ’em anyhow!

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

 

Happy New Year, all!

S. Omar 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 CowboyPoetry.com.

Jay Snider recites this poem in a forthcoming CD from CowboyPoetry.com.

This photograph is by Colorado rancher Terry Nash, taken in late 2013. Terry has a new CD, A Good Ride. Find more about him at CowboyPoetry.com and at his site, terrynashcowboypoet.com.

 

Rick Huff’s “Best of the West Reviews,” Winter, 2017

 

Rick Huff reviews Western music and cowboy poetry releases in his “Rick Huff’s Best of the West Reviews” column in The Western Way from the Western Music Association and in other publications.

Rick Huff considers Western music books and recordings; cowboy poetry books, chapbooks, and recordings;  and relevant videos for review. For other materials, please query first: bestofthewest@swcp.com.

Please be sure to include complete contact information, price (plus postage) and order address information.

From Rick Huff, February, 2012:

Policy of the Column: It should be understood by artists sending material that it is being done for review consideration. Submitting such material does not ensure that it will be reviewed. Also, predominantly religious material is not accepted for review in the column. If further clarification is needed, contact Rick Huff, PO Box 8442, Albuquerque, NM 87198-8442.

Find other recent reviews here and hundreds of previous reviews on CowboyPoetry.com.

Find current and past reviews published in The Western Way at the Western Music Association site.

bwseparator

Selections from “Rick Huff’s Best of the West Reviews,” Winter, 2017, below:

•  Baxter Black  SCRAMBLED WISDOM ALMOST ISN’T IS…IS IT
• 
Terry Nash A GOOD RIDE
•  Rod Miller  RAWHIDE ROBINSON RIDES A DROMEDARY
• 
Bob Marshall SCREEN DOOR 

 

bwseparator

11-17-Baxter Black- Scrambled Wisdom [Almost Isn't Is, Is It]

SCRAMBLED WISDOM ALMOST ISN’T IS…IS IT
by Baxter Black

If the various computer auto-corrects through which it will run actually allow Baxter Black’s title for his latest book to remain unmolested without major reprogramming, it’ll be a miracle!  Or as Black puts at one point in the book: “Anlkadhtlid;s;apoliet eto tpnongljeryrypp (and this applies to typing, too)!”

Here we have a collection of mini-essays and some poems, each with an afterthought (or Baxterthought?)…such as “if life gives you llamas, make llamanade” and “if three out of four people suffer from diarrhea, does that mean one out of five enjoys it” and “(when) Horace Greeley said ‘go west, young man’…three hundred people in San Francisco drowned.”  You get the picture, and boy what a picture.  The book is dedicated to the late Pat Richardson, and some of his pearls are strung in as well.

There’s a good measure of education here on the perils, strangeness, wonder, wackiness and indispensability of the agricultural life.  Therefore, might we say Black’s lives matter?  Occasionally some of it will be best appreciated by his target audience and some of his traditional targets are again in his cross-hairs, but when he pitches haymakers, he’s just feeding the herd.  Recommended, but then when would something from BB not be?

Book (162 pages) – baxterblack.com

©2017, Rick Huff

bwseparator

11-17-Terry Nash-A Good Ride

A GOOD RIDE
by Terry Nash

First, Terry Nash is, beyond a doubt, one of the best Cowboy Poets writing or delivering today.  I have always found his releases to be worth both your time and investment.

Badger Clark’s “Ridin’” was put to music as a song some years back. For this album, guitarist Ken Dravis helps to create a different but equally suitable mounting for Nash’s enthusiastic take on it.  Beyond the Clark cover, others include works of Kiskaddon (“The Lost Flannins”), Donnie Wynkoop (the hilarious “Fords [Snake Attack]”) and Buck Ramsey (“Bad Job”).  Original picks are “Homesteader,” a fresh version of his wonderful work “A Cowman’s Lot,” an ‘object’ lesson (the object being cow poop) called “Blurred Vision,” “December Stragglers” and what could be called a modern-day “moral of the story” story “Skype (#don’tgetthispoundsignstuff).”

I’ve said this in other reviews, but it holds true.  This particular CD is one of those you might consider using when defining or illustrating what cowboy poetry is or should be. Fourteen tracks.  Highly recommended.

CD:  $18 ppd from Terry Nash, 1278 N Road, Loma, CO 81524 or visit terrynashcowboypoet.com

©2017, Rick Huff

bwseparator

Rawhide Robinson Rides a Dromedary

RAWHIDE ROBINSON RIDES A DROMEDARY
by Rod Miller

Billed as “the true tale of a wild west camel caballero,” it may be best described as a true “tail” of one!  To be sure, many facts of the historic, ill-fated Army camel gambit in the Arizona desert are faithfully relayed through this story…along with plenty about 19th Century sailing on the high seas!  But remember, Rod Miller’s Rawhide Robinson is also part Pecos Bill!

I will say with this dromedary lope, Rawhide may have found his stride.  His tall tales are integrated more sparingly than in his first outing and he’s hooked more to historical doings than he was in his second.  Filmmaker Joe Camp (of Benji fame) took a dip into the camel trough in his 1976 comedy Hawmps, coming about as close as Hollywood ever does to relating the real story of something.  In Miller’s version, Rawhide Robinson is officially hornswoggled into sailing over the salty seas to roundup and transport the contrary animals back to Arizona.  Adventure ensues.  Back in America, mule packers claim camels are no match for their charges, resulting in an epic desert test.  What happens in the end?  Hint:  Maybe because Rawhide Robinson wasn’t really there is why the #!*^#ing plan never worked!  Enjoy!

Trade Paperback:  (290 pages) $25.95  www.rawhiderobinson.com

©2017, Rick Huff

bwseparator

11-17-Bob Marshall-Screen Door

SCREEN DOOR
by Bob Marshall

Bob Marshall’s newest release is an enjoyable, solid mix of Contemporary Western and Country tracks  Ten top Austin-area session people participated, including former WMA artist/now Reckless Kelly leader Cody Braun.  When you’re aiming to secure Texas radio airplay, this is all to the good.  But anyone doing it should know there is an Austin formula sound…and some of it has crept in here.

Picks from among the Marshall creations include the bluesy swinger “Hole In My Rope,” “He Talks To God,” “Rodeo Queen Deluxe” and “It’s Gonna Get Western.”  Add to them Marshall’s fine cover of the Donnie Blanz/Ed Bruce song “You Just Can’t See Him From The Road.”

Bob Marshall is a strong enough performer to garner airplay and fans wherever he can, and he certainly can’t be blamed for looking for both wherever they can be had.  He’s another example of the need to build a commercial base from which serious Western artists can work.  Thirteen tracks.  Recommended.

CD: $20 postpaid, www.bobmarshallband.com.

 

UNSETTLED  by Terry Nash

tnkg1.jpg

photo by Captured by Karen Photography

 

UNSETTLED
by Terry Nash

I’m unsettled these days.
Just slightly off-track.
It’s almost been a year
Since I was horseback.

I daydream now and then,
And think about past years
When I viewed summer range
Between two pointed ears.

I long for the small things
That come with the life,
Like saddlin’ a mount
At morning’s first light,

And the sound of the nickers
When the trailer’d pull in.
The handshakes and howdys
Of old pards brought a grin.

Then ridin’ with good friends
Lookin’ for cattle.
Checkin’ ‘em all meant
A full day a’straddle.

I pine for that thick smell
From a workin’ day’s sweat
When I’d strip my kack
And the blanket was wet,

And the soft quiet sound
Of a horse chewin’ hay
While I leaned on the rail
At the end of the day.

In mountains or desert
Just follerin’ cows,
My mind would rest easy
If I’s back there right now.

©2015, Terry Nash
This poem should not be reposted or reprinted without permission

Colorado rancher, reciter, and poet Terry Nash includes this poem on his new CD, A Good Ride. Find the track list below.

We asked about its inspiration and he told us, “I was between horses. My good cow pony was rehabilitating from a foot injury, and the horse that replaced him was a few months down the road. The inspiration for ‘Unsettled’ came when I was standing helping our shoer. Just scratching a good horse’s jaw, and breathing in the smells, well that puts a feller into a poetic mood.”

In coming months, Terry makes a return appearance as as invited poet at the Western Folklife Center’s National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada (January 30-February 4, 2018) and at the Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Alpine, Texas (March 203, 2018).

This photo by Grand Junction photographer Karen Gilbride of Captured by Karen Photography  is the cover of Terry Nash’s A Good Ride.

Find more about Terry Nash at CowboyPoetry.com and about his CDs and more at his web site, terrynashcowboypoet.com.

tngoodride

Includes:

“Ridin'” by Charles Badger Clark
“Two Below the Hocks” by Terry Nash
“The Lost Flannins” by Bruce Kiskaddon
“Homesteader” by Terry Nash
“A Cowman’s Lot” by Terry Nash
“Pensioner” by Terry Nash
“Fords (Snake Attack)” by Donnie Wynkoop
“December Stragglers” by Terry Nash
“Skype (#don’tgetthispoundsignstuff” by Terry Nash
“Bad Job” by Buck Ramsey
“Unsettled” by Terry Nash
“My Pew” by Terry Nash
“A Good Ride” by Terry Nash

Available for $17 postpaid from:

Terry Nash
1278 N Road
Loma, CO 81524
www.terrynashcowboypoet.com 

 

 

DECEMBER STRAGGLERS by Terry Nash

tn

DECEMBER STRAGGLERS
by Terry Nash

Morning’s pale sun gave way to thick clouds
As we all saddled our mounts.
Ridin’ from camp, our mission today
Is needin’ to fill the count.

Three hundred ten was gathered last month,
The tally was sixteen shy.
We rode the breaks and benches for sign;
No tellin’ how they’d got by.

Two solid weeks we searched the JU,
Combin’ the brush for eight pair,
With little to show for our ridin’
‘Cept that the stragglers weren’t there.

Those cattle were nowhere on our range;
They’d maybe returned to Hell’s Hole;
High country grass they’d grazed since July,
Till fall’s storms started to roll.

We’d gathered three pair and one hunter
A-hoofin’ it into town,
But we’re still ten head out today and
The next big storm’s blowin’ down.

We’re buckin’ a head-wind this morning,
Five riders watchin’ for sign.
The Lasalles are fadin’ from our view;
The wind’s beginnin’ to whine.

We wallered deep drifts t’ward the 2V
Followin’ Old Raley’s hunch:
“This new storm’ll bring ‘em down,” he said,
“We’ll likely find the whole bunch.”

Gates were left open all through the range
So stragglers could pass on through.
Veteran cows will know to move down
When winter dictates they do.

The clouds were hangin’ level and dark,
Raley was settin’ the pace.
We topped out above Luster Basin,
The first flakes hittin’ my face.

Jackson pulled up his horse and pointed
At our stragglers, single file,
Tails to the wind and stringin’ our way
Down the draw a quarter mile.

Wild old Snort was a-leadin’ the bunch.
We split and got out of sight.
We’ll swing in behind and then flank ‘em
Providin’ our timing’s right.

The cattle filed past and we stepped out
Snort threw her head flingin’ snot.
Jess was ready when she quit the trail;
He turned her back at a trot.

The old rip knew where she’s goin’.
She and the rest reached the pines,
She led ‘em through and out on the road
With us just ridin’ behind.

The storm at our backs now, we’re ridin’;
Wet heavy flakes flyin’ past.
Sllckers drippin’, our horses are soaked,
We’re hopin’ our luck will last.

Past Mountain Island, down off Black Hill,
She struck the trail to the north
Where the Beiser corrals stood waitin’.
Two flank riders sashayed forth

To get in position to turn ‘em,
But Ol’ Snort just walked on in.
We backed in the trucks and trailered ‘em
Just as the light’s gettin’ thin.

It’s usually never that easy,
You mostly earn what you bring.
We got lucky – our stragglers found us
In winter’s cold icy sting.

© 2012, Terry Nash, used with permission

Colorado rancher and poet told us about the poem’s inspiration, “We summer our cattle on private ground, pooling them with several other herds at Glade Park and Pinon Mesa, high country situated a few miles west of Grand Junction, in Western Colorado. We throw the cattle on the mountain in early June and usually gather and bring ’em back to the valley in November, when the weather dictates we do. It usually takes three or four ‘sweeps’ a-horseback to clean the 6000 acre pasture, and there’s always a few stragglers reluctant to leave. Riding the pasture looking for those last few head isn’t always in the  best of weather. ‘December Stragglers’ came from a ride like that.”

Terry Nash also shared this photograph, which was a part of Picture the West, photos of “gathering cattle at 9800 feet and trailing the herd twelve miles down to 7,000 feet, from Pinon Mesa to Glade Park, Colorado.” See all the photos here.

“December Stragglers” is the title poem of Terry’s 2013 CD. Find a video interview with him here. Terry Nash appears at events across the West.

Find more about Terry at CowboyPoetry.com and at his site, terrynashcowboypoet.com.

 

TWO BELOW THE HOCKS by Terry Nash

mm

TWO BELOW THE HOCKS
by Terry Nash

Catch two below the hocks
And then drag ‘em to the fire,
Work ‘em slow and easy,
Lest you stir the bosses’ ire.
The family’s at the fire
With hot irons and vaccination.
Young and old, each has a job
In this time-worn occupation.

Catch two below the hocks,
Then bring ‘em slow and steady,
There ain’t no time to tarry
For the ground crew’s at the ready.
There’s a couple hundred calves to brand;
We’ll have ‘em worked by mid-day.
Turn each one out, mother him up
And know we’ve earned our pay.

It’s a cowman’s rite of spring,
This brandin’ calves traditon;
A western “sport of kings,”
Aand an honored avocation.
So catch two below the hocks boys,
We’ll sing your praises loud-
We’re feedin’ America good red beef!
So set your horses proud!

© 2016, Terry Nash, used with permission

Colorado cowman Terry Nash was inspired by Marcia Molnar’s painting, “Dust n’ Dogies,” which graced the Arizona Cowboy Poets poster this year. The gathering invites poets and musicians to be inspired by its poster art (and that inspired the Art Spur at CowboyPoetry.com).

Terry comments, “I was inspired to write the poem when I saw Marcia’s great painting.It made me think of our spring brandings and family and neighbors coming together to help each other. As a cowman, I also think it’s important to remind people we raise beef to feed the American people.”

You’ll find Terry next at Colorado’s 28th annual Durango Cowboy Poetry Gathering, September 29-October 2, 2016.

Performers include Wylie and the Wild West; night show poets and musicians Brooke Turner, Bonnie Krogman, Randy Rieman, Mary Kaye, R.P. Smith, Paul Larson, Jerry Brooks, and Miss Devon and the Outlaw; and daytime performers Amy Hale Auker, Floyd Beard, Almeda Terry, Don Cadden, Jeff Carson, Todd Carter and Family, Nona Kelley Carver, Ray Delgado, Mike Dunn, Slim Farnsworth, Rolf Flake, Randy Huston, Jo Lynn Kirkwood, Tim Krebs, Jarle Kvale, Lynn Belle Lewis, Bill May, Slim McWilliams, Terry Nash, Gail Steiger, Caitlyn Taussig, Sam Noble, Lindy Simmons, and Sam DeLeeuw.

Find more about the event on Facebook and at durangocowboypoetrygathering.org.

Marcia Molnar’s bio tells that she “…lives in Prescott, Arizona, with her artist husband George Molnar. Together, they explore and paint Arizona ranch life as well as the Grand Canyon.” See the poem displayed with a larger image at Marcia Molnar’s site and find more about her and her work at the site and on Facebook.

Thanks to Marcia Molnar for permission to use this image.

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