Tonight, I have sure shed some tears. My amazing Aunt Jeanie is in a hospital in Delta and it will not be long until the Good Lord calls her home. She is a wonderful lady and has lived a great, long life. It will be a joyous reunion when she reaches the other side with her wonderful husband and her perfect parents, my Grand parents. I know that she will be free of the pain and trials of her life here toward its end. And most of my tears are because of the memory of happier times and experiences we have shared. The hardest part of having such a close family is, losing my Aunts and Uncles, is like losing another set of parents. I feel for my cousins and think of them as brothers and sisters. They are a fine bunch for sure. I am definitely the black sheep of the outfit, so don't judge them to harshly because of their bad luck in being related to me. I am here alone tonight, as my family are still at basketball practice over in Eureka, where the kids attend school and my wife teaches. So, after feeding and choring and getting a fire going in the stove, I went to work on a poem, to maybe try and express how I am feeling. I thought maybe I might share it with my Ranchers friends this evening. It's still a work in progress, but here goes anyway.
And if you feel so inclined, would ya maybe keep the Taylor family, here on the edge of the Great Basin, in your thoughts and Prayers this evening? Thanks Mi Amigos
Sisters of the Sheeprocks
The high desert has its beauty,
And the vistas are something to behold.
From a sea of silver sage,
To granite peaks, that are eons old.
The quakies in their splendor,
And the oaks and the maples in the fall.
All colors of the rainbow,
With a flawless deep blue sky above it all.
Maybe it’s the purple of a thunderstorm
And the flash of lightning, rolling past the Swazeys.
Or just a cool mountain morning,
When the air is crisp and the clouds hang low and hazy.
But even in it’s glory, the ol’ desert, never stood a chance!
Compared to the beauty, of the Ekker girls, that lived on Ekker Ranch!
Full of fire and full of pride,
Always ready to rope or ride,
With their parents, side by side,
Pioneer stock, true and tried!
They are horsewomen of the highest sort,
And no cowboy could be better,
At all the tasks that ranch-life brings,
Regardless of the weather.
They grew up building fences
and taking care of stock,
Grandma taught them thier school work
And they thrived in the dust and rock.
They sunk their roots down deep
And they blossomed into ladies
And they married men to stand beside them
And started raising babies.
And they always loved the desert
And they never went to far.
And they pass along their heritage
And still shine, like the western star.
The world may not know them,
Or send accolades their way,
None of them are wealthy
But if you ask me, I would say,
That they have more than millionaires,
They have riches that touch the sky.
They are queens of the western range,
And an example to you and I,
Of treating people fairly,
And always being kind,
Of loving the Lord and the land
And to share the peace you find.
They are always helping others
And rarely stop to rest.
They encourage and inspire and make ya want to do your best.
To Josephine, Betty and Jeanie
And to Ann and Patsy too,
I send my love and high regard
And I tip my hat to you.
You are the bedrock of our family
You are loved more than you know.
We are proud to share the legacy,
That you have nurtured and helped grow.
Grandpa and Grandma Ekker
Are sure proud of you too,
And from all your kids and grandkids,
We cherish and honor you.
It really doesn’t matter, which side of the veil we are on,
The love and the legacy will always continue along.
The Sisters of the Sheeprocks
Are our mothers and our friends
And its surely been a privilege
To live my life with them
Darrell Holden, February 1st, 2017
A poor ride beats a great walk any day!