Another Horse to Saddle, Online Cowboy Poetry Book

Another Horse to Saddle

An Online Cowboy Poetry Book

  © Model Guy S.L.Reay

A Man's Word by Sandy Reay ©2012

 

Dan Black was too young to be out working cattle
But worked like a full-size top hand;
Did more than his fair share of training young horses
And said "A man's word is his brand."

One Sunday young Dan wore his cleanest old blue jeans,
Spit-polished his boots till they shone.
Red shirt and bandana, hat brushed free of trail dust,
Rode out to the church dance alone.

Lee Ann Mays, eleven, fixed her first box supper
To take to the church for the dance,
But she left there crying 'cause it wasn't wrapped nice
And ran into Dan, just by chance.

Dan asked what she had. She said, "Fresh cream from Bossie
And berries from Mom's Mason jar."
For dinner, the two kids ate berries and cream and
They talked and then wished on a star.

Lee Ann soon got sick. She came down with a fever.
The doc wasn't good but he tried.
Young Dan held her hand through the last of her illness;
Was holding it, still, when she died.

Days later, the boys in the bunkhouse went looking
For Dan down at Mays’ creek-side spread.
They passed two fresh graves in the cottonwood shade and
They wondered just who could be dead.

They heard that Lee Ann said to Dan, “Oh, please promise
You'll see me again in a week."
Dan promised then fell sick. He died a week later.
They’re buried back there, near the creek.

Dan Black was too young to be out working cattle
But worked like a full-size top hand;
Did more than his fair share of training young horses
And said "A man's word is his brand."

A Man's Word Sandy Reay Lynn Kopelke
©Saddle Up Lynn Kopelke
   
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Inspired by a story in "That Old Ace in the Hole" by Annie Proulx.
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