Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Cowboy Poetry

My style of cowboy poetry leans heavily towards the Robert E. Howard bloodsoaked manliness kind, but for those of you in a milder tone this Christmas season you may enjoy a fine collection of Christmas themed cowboy poetry from the Bar-D Ranch.  

Best wishes for your Christmas
Is all you get from me,
'Cause I ain't no Santa Claus—
Don't own no Christmas tree.

But if wishes was health and money,
I'd fill your buck-skin poke,
Your doctor would go hungry
An' you never would be broke.

From Charlie Russell's 1914 Christmas card

For more go see the folks at Cowboy Poetry.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

Made it this far?  Good.  Here's a Howard poem for you:

Sonora to Del Rio is a hundred barren miles
Where the sotol weave and shimmer in the sun—
Like a host of swaying serpents straying down the bare defiles
When the silver, scarlet webs of dawn are spun.

There are little 'dobe ranchoes, brooding far along the sky
On the sullen, dreary bosoms of the hills.
Not a wolf to break the quiet, not a single bird to fly;
Where the silence is so utter that it thrills.

Maybe, in the heat of evening, comes a wind from Mexico
Laden with the heat of seven Hells,
And the rattler in the yucca and the buzzard dark and slow
Hear and understand the grisly tales it tells.

Gaunt and stark and bare and mocking rise the everlasting cliffs
Like a row of sullen giants carved of stone,
Till the traveler, mazed with silence, thinks to look at hieroglyphs,
Thinks to see a carven pharaoh on his throne.

And the road goes on forever, o'er the barren hill forever,
And there's little to hint of flowing wine—
But beyond the hills and sotol there's a mellow curving river
And a land of sun and mellow wine.

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