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Good Poem

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A Bear Tale by Sunny Hancock - Cowboy Poet

You know I's up in the Cykan Black Hills camp working for the old Zeke Cross,
This was my own piece of country I was cook and crew and boss.
The afternoon of that year was comin on as I recall
meanin Summer had hit the caprock and slid right down into fall.

Days was warm and pleasant though the nights was kinda sharp.
I had a nice snug little cabin to keep the cold wind off my tarp.
Aspen leaves was turnin yellow bees was buzzin round the hives,
just one of them kinda days when it was great to be alive.
So, I'm a jogging along that morning looking out beneath my hat
I thought I'd take a little circle down toward Silver Dollar Flat
And maybe brand some big, slick yearling with the address of this farm
Cause I sure did need to limber up my old stiff ropin arm.

You know I'd been kinda travelin down this little open draw
and I come around a corner and I was shocked at what I saw.
I just pulled up there a-gawkin and my eyes went plumb agog,
there's this big old brennel he-bear diggin ants out of a log.
My heart commenced to pounding and I couldn't get no air,
I knew I'd never have a better chance to ROPE MYSELF A BEAR.

So I'm a trying to jerk my rope down and my old horse began to dance
and heck old bruin, he ain't heard me, he's still busy diggin ants.
I got my rope tied hard and solid and I built that loop with care
I gave out a cowboy war hoop and I built right to that bear.
Well this old beast heard me comin and he beat it for the trees
They weren't no moss a grown on him and he sure did split the breeze.
But I just pulled right in behind him and like that bible story told
cast my bread upon the water, it come back A THOUSAND FOLD.

Well, I pitched the slack right at him and I turned my pony neat,
And I heard him grunt as he hit the ground as I jerked him off his feet.
Then I towed him toward the timber just the way it should be done.
Heck, there wasn't nothin to it ropin bears was LOTS OF FUN.
Now in the timber I got busy dodgin limbs and brush and such
and I ain't had time to check up on my cargo very much.

Well I'm gonna start by breakin him to lead,at least that's what I'm hopin
But, I looked back and here that bear come, just like that right up my rope and
Things sure started looking different so I tells him ok bruin "I'll start paying more attention to this job that I'm a doin."
I'll just zig and zag and circle some and you just follow me
cause I'm about to bash your brains on some big ole jack pine tree.

So I zigged and zagged and circled but it seemed to no avail
next time I checked old teddy's right on my horses tail.
Bout that time my old pony made a funny little jump
and that old bear commenced to climbin up that rope and across his rump.
I yelled and squalled and hollered and I slapped him with my hat
but that old bear's plumb determined he's gonna get up where I'm at.

You know I've knowed a lot of fellers on the hills and in the plains
and nobody ever told me that I was overblessed with brains.
But it didn't take no Einstein with no special high IQ
nor no call from God to tell what that bear was gonna do.
I know a coward's way out is a bad one in most anybody's book,
but's the only route left open and that's the one I took.
I just bailed out and checked it to him and a big rock broke my fall
Old boy I says it looks like you just bought er all.
and they went crashin through the timber well I realized of course
that I'd just lost a real good saddle and the company'd lost a horse.

How's a man supposed to tell it with the boss a standin there
you took a plumb good horse and saddle and just guv em to a bear.
You know these thoughts and lots more like em was runnin through my mind
as I went limpin down that cow trail trying to leave that wreck behind.
My clothes was sorta tattered and I'd lost some chunks of hide.
but my body wasn't hurtin near as much as was my pride.

Then I heard a noise behind me and the sound began to swell
back the way that I'd just come from and I wondered what the h...
And I see my horse acomin, steppin lively down the slope
that old bear's up in my saddle got a loop built, swinging my rope.

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