Cattleman

All along the open prairie

where cattle and antelope roam

where the coyotes howl

and the hooting owl

make their hunting home—

where the summer sings

of golden wheat

that waves as the wind goes by

and the falcon circles high above

in the glory of the clear blue sky,

there stand a homestead

old and proud

within that gloomy

haunted shroud

of a place long vacant

in need of paint

in need of love

like a forgotten saint,

sentinel on this open land

like the thumb print of some

long dead hand.

And where hay had been cut

and steers had been rounded

and an old, flea-ridden mutt

had been hustled and hounded

by those ten barnyard cats

that showed up one day

nestled within

the fresh cut hay—

that is where the good men worked

sweating and swearing under the sun

from the backs of a trusty horse

with an old Tom-Mix revolver gun,

ready for anything, drought or winter storm

riding towards the sunset

and rising every morn.

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