Cowboy Poetry: “Interesting Question” by Tom W. Smith

This poem describes the adventure (and pains) of team roping.

I hadn’t team roped in a dozen year

And the offer of practice I knew was sincere.

Just Colin, his son (a lad of four)

And Joe Vielma; there’d be no more

To laugh at me each time I missed,

So goin’ ropin’ I couldn’t resist.

Colin’s arena was hard-packed clay.

It hadn’t been disked in many a day.

Me and Ol’ Okie’d caught a bunch in the pasture

But these Corrientes proved a whole lot faster.

On the fourth run, the steer cut hard right.

The saddle slipped, though cinched up tight.

I somehow knew my cinch had bust

As my side and shoulder raised the arena dust.

My lungs sure needed to re-inflate

And I could feel the broken ribs grate.

On the run came Colin and Joe,

Surprised by the unexpected show.

More than a decade now has passed,

But for each of us that memory will last.

Though abrasions may heal and broken ribs mend,

The laws of aging we can’t rescind.

And these words still echo through my head,

Little Matthew shoutin’, “Daddy, is he dead?”

 

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