"Grab that stack of K-mart tubs an' that twenty foot minnow seine.
An' poke some holes in them tub lids, we ain't nothin' if not humane".
"I'll throw in some Spam an' saltines whilst you load it in the truck".
"Don't forget my bag a Cheetos", hollered back my ol' pal Chuck.

We had the herd located, the cavvy heifers on hiatus,
Sides we had wives to cover if calvin' could not await us.
So for this here morning, an ancient Cro-Magnun rite,
I suspect observed by Lancelot, when just a rookie knight.

I'd just got news from Powell that the Bigmouth wuz in spawn,
an' I planned to be at Wahweap marina tomorrow 'bout predawn.
But I ought not to preceed myself, this day's task wuz preparatory.
The Powell aquatic adventures wuz shore nuff another story.

Now if you look in bassin's Hoyle, or wherever sportsmen write,
there scrawled in font so bold, "LIVE BAIT JUST AIN'T POLITE!..
It speaks of lures an' platic worms, and floatin' lifelike frogs.
In the column under "thou shalt not's", is listed waterdogs.

We ain't Sierra Club candidates, we'd used dynamite an' shock,
One fishin' trip with Uncle Jack, we'd shot carp with his new Glock.
Sides, these dogs weren't just for fishin, they'ze merchandise as well,
The tackle shop at Powell, would buy 'em to resell.

"I heard they're bringin' two bits a head, er twenty bucks a gross!"
Old Chuck had set to cypherin' as the stock tanks wuz drawin' close.
His mind was fairly reeling, he'ze a makin' money hand an' fist,
He'ze gonna sell the excess dogs, weren't nothin' he had missed.

We’ll likely get some crawlifants, when we‘re seinin‘ out them dogs.
I’m a workin’ up a blue light special, we’ll throw in some pollywogs.
We’ll package ‘em like chicken wings, - don’t that sound enticing?
Then we’ll offer tax deferments, an’ mulit-level pricing.

But I beg yer pardon fer a moment, I assumed that you all knew,
but I see by yer demeanor, they’ze some don’t have a clue,
What is a waterdog, er what’s a doggin’ trips’ about,
Who think the creature’s a cross ‘tween a beagle an’ a trout.

For the waterdog unenlightened, who may think they beg an' bark,
Or for those who might want one to chase their frisbee in the park,
I should describe as best I can the nature of the beast,
I'd say they look some like a lizard made out of spoiled yeast.

Or like a thing by old Stephen King when on a Jim Beam drunk,
perhaps a sanded horney toad, in an advanced state of funk.
They thrive in filth and mud, that’s nasty as devils claw,
not unlike a major democrat who hails from Arkansas.

We hit this tank just after dawn, the date was May the third,
That muddy drinker Titanic cold, spite of what you may of heard.
"You take this end there by the wash, I'll grab the other side,
We'll make a pass with Luther's seine, but wait, the tank's too wide"!.

At this point though, we'ze both committed, - or some'd say that we should be,
we shed our duds an' waded in amongst the bovinian debris.
"Be careful Chuck of where you step"! Just then I heard Chuck swear.
"I should a asked, does these dogs bite, - you know, I mean down there"?

That thought had crossed my mind, but I'ze like a swampland duck,
Who knowed beneath wuz alligators but hopin' fer some luck.
We made a pass an' drug 'er up there on the offside levee,
four score of flippin' leviathons, - we loaded up the Chevy.
(had to rhyme Chevy, I'm sorry)

We'ze out there in the wide open, in Adam's own attire.
The god of nature, Chuck an' I, an' whatever's in that mire.
We took another pass or two, each time a bit more puckered,
Exclaimed ol' Chuck, "I'm through, - I'm froze and 'sides I'm tuckered".

We rinsed off a bit but muddy still, we partook of Spam 'n cracker,
whilst we dried an' warmed a bit, we looked like statuettes in lacquer!
I mused to Chuck how this must appear, or what would a voyeur think,
"We'd fit right in the Inquirer, - captioned, "THE MISSING LINK".

Let me digress just a bit, - digressing IS my strongest suit,
an' tell you I've often wondered if cows brains can compute?
Can they think a unique thought or form a conscious stream,
Or are they just beef piled up, a skull to balance out the theme?

But as I perched there on that sun baked shore, bare an' all a glisten,
As Chuck began to doze a bit, I strained out a real hard listen.
Focused like toward them steers that were millin' round the tank,
I figgered they'ze a thinkin', - wuz this some sort of prank?

I felt as well, tho I'd say, this flies in the face of all creation.
that I could deduce their brainwaves, - a momentary aberration!
They cocked their heads, a channel opened , a chorus of sarcastic Ox refrain,
Thought they, "How'd this pair ever get above us in the old food chain?"

This little poem was based loosly on a real experience I had with a fellow named Chuck Petkovich. Chuck was a dear friend with whom I shared a good bit of my life. We had some difficulties in our relationship and missed many years of friendship but it was made right in later years and I consider him a dear friend forever.

© Paul D. Hatch
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.



"He’ze just above Pete’s pasture,
a crossin’ Silver creek."
"Built like a Russian Olympian,
a real steroid turkey freak!"

Says I, "you mean that rocky knoll,
that ain’t got a bit of feed?"
"I’d heard that feller who bought that place,
was bringin’ in some exotic breed."

"Yep, that’s the spot I saw that bird,
‘bout four foot tall at least."
"An' I know what yer a thinkin’,
but I’ze sober as a priest."

A call like that’ll wake you up,
like a syringe of caffeine.
"Grab yer gun, an‘ yer turkey tag,
I’ll pick ya up at six fifteen."

"I’ll bring my ten bore Greener,
an’ some high base double ott."
"A feller shouldn’t sport a tu-tu,
when ya dance the turkey trot."

Well, it was finally comin‘ home to roost,
-all that Malathion spray,
lab clonin’ an’ gene splicin’,
an buildin' parts from DNA.

Had spawned a grand mutation,
an’ if what George said was true.
These things could be as raunchy,
as Ben Lauden sniffing glue.

"Just drop me off at Fost Flakes farm,
I’ll push ‘im down the ridge."
"We’ll get that poultry penned as tight,
as butter in the fridge."

"You work up through them cuts,
We’ll seal that gobblers’ fate."
"If you got ‘im located right,
he’ll be close by that new boy’s gate."

We’ze both turkey journeymen,
plum’ full of woodsey tricks,
But we’d never hunted birds before,
with twenty pound drumsticks.

I’ze as giddy as a schoolboy,
anticipatin’ his first prom.
As pumped up as an orchestra,
playin’ Johannes Brahm.

I‘ze a stalkin‘ like a cross
‘tween Zorro an‘ Daniel Boone..
Then I spotted ol’ George a closin’ in,
we’ze a real big bird platoon.

I come around a cedar tree,
an’ I’ze starin’ face to face.
With a brand new sign installed,
by the new owner of the place.

Just then I spotted ol’ George,
an’ I heard a real commotion.
Like a Swartzenegger movie,
it all turned to slow motion.

George’s gun was comin’ up,
just as I read the sign.
"Don’t shoot ol’ pard!" - I shouted,
as a chill went down my spine.

But I’ze too late, it sounded like,
Private Ryan in THX.
Or like somebody announced a pay cut,
at the county complex.

So you may wonder what was on that sign,
an’ why I sounded the alarm?
It’d explain why Georges’ making payments,
to Jerry Smith’s Emu farm.

© Paul D. Hatch
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.


Well it’s been said by some I know who quite obviously ain’t been there..
That growin’ old is a great adventure, of such folks you should beware..

Now age is good on petrified wood and it’s fine on vintage wine.
But is seems that as I enter geeserville, my usefulness is in decline.

They'ze lots of cowboy stuff I've learned. I ought to write it down.
But when I share it with the youngsters, they shake their heads an' frown.

In station wagon parlance, I need my oil and filter changed.
I still got mostly original parts, they just seem to have re-arranged!

My value’d been up if like a classic car I’d a simply been left parked.
Or like a bottle of grand Bordeaux, I’d a never popped my cork.

I'm like an old windmill bent and scored, with vanes unevenly spaced.
I need my sucker rod pulled and straightened and my leaky foot valve replaced.

Seems to me like my get up and go has done got up and went.
Saddelin‘ up once was easy, - now it’s an Olympic class event.

On brandin’ day I’m now consigned to loadin’ up the lepto gun.
Or check fer lumps an’ cancer eyes, - now don’t that sound like fun?

My hairs’ still growin’, but mostly in places that I’d rather not talk about.
And my joint’s are given to creakin’, or stove up with the gout.

My kids put me on Ginkgo Biloba about a year ago last November.
I been takin’ it daily, -- or weekly, - - I don’t remember!

Tellin' me your darkest secrets, won't put you at the slightest risk.
In high tech terms, I think someone has formatted my floppy disk.

Agin just ain’t fer puny cowboys, you've got to be right tough.
To survive the view in a bathroom mirror, when yer standin' there in the buff.

It’s kinda a metamorphosis, like a plum that’s goin’ prune.
My back looks like a topographic map, of the range around Rangoon.

I once could ride from dawn to dusk, rodeo on the off weekends.
Eat steak instead of Ensure, - wear shorts instead of depends.

Now my grandkids stop by the ranch, they think I'm sharp as cheese.
"Did you fight with General Grant?", - "Grandpa, tell us 'bout it PLEASE!"

"Silent emissions" my ol‘ pard noted, "seem to increase through the years."
"You sure they’re silent ol’ pal" I asked, "Er is the problem with yer ears?"

My bladder used to have two settings, quite simply stop or start.
I either wuz or wuzn’t then, now I pee a pint and drip a quart.

They’ze some jerry atric sawbones, who work full time for medicare.
they’ll patch yer joints with bolts an’ screws, an’ plug in some new fake hair.

They got "One a days‘" an‘ "Metamucil", an’ some healthy herbal stuff..
Yer Vet'll even super size 'em, but it still won't be enough!

Like them ol’ nags when they wear out, ya turn ‘em into glue.
An’ the Man upstairs WILL repossess when you come overdue.

Oh, you can surely put up a battle, but like an iceberg in Qatar.
you can throw up shade an’ use a fan, but you’re gonna lose the war.

A warning to all you young bucks who are waiting there in the wings.
With your bodies built by pumpin‘ iron, devoid of dents and dings.

Least you think that you’re immune, I’ll issue you this sage warning.
The only requirement fer gettin’ like me? Just keep wakin’ up in the morning!!

© Paul D. Hatch
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.


No one knew where he’d come from, nor paid him too much heed.
He just rolled into town an’ stuck, like a wind blown tumbleweed.

His Porter seat an’ hand wove twine showed he’d been around.
He got a job at Rafter Y for forty bucks and found.

Ol’ Trope had once confided when we’ze out on cow patrol.
That stackin’ up a pile of cash just weren’t his life's goal.

"Well, if yer just plumb bent on poverty, you chose the right career.
I ain't never knowed a rich man who'd spent his life behind a steer."

Say’s he, "I’m plum contented to just work an’ draw my pay."
"An’ just perchance to make my mark before I'm laid away."

"Yea, make your mark"
, I thought, "fat chance on cowhand wages."
"The deck is stacked agin’ you hoss an’ has been through the ages."

"‘Bout the only way us common folk can ever make a mark.
Is kinda like a mongrel dog does in a tree lined park."

Then July next around the fourth, at the rodeo in town.
Ol’ Trope wuz workin’ on the gates an’ I’ze the barrel clown.

We’d bucked through the first set-up an’ the chutes had been restocked.
The lead bull from the Landon string was loaded, primed, an’ cocked.

That kid that drawed him on that day just weren’t no match at all.
He’d hadn’t even cleared the gate when he began to fall.

He went off against his rope an’ hung up as tight as glue.
I’ze just a novice clown at best an’ I didn’t have a clue.

Ol’ Trope bailed into that arena like a waltzer to the floor.
An’ done a dance with that ol’ hide like a Mescan Matador.

When he sashed that bull’d shay, an’ he jerked that ride string loose.
That rider hit the dance floor cold an’ would a called a truce.

But like a Mafia hit man who hadn’t filled out his contract.
That critter turned back to polish off that load he’d just unpacked.

A batch of finished cowboys watchin‘, figgered that feller had no hope.
An’ they all agreed he’s dead today, if it weren’t fer ol’ Trope.

Calm as a summer mornin’, he’d stepped into that melee,
an’ throwed hisself on that ol’ skull, like a grand velcro bouquet.

He hung on like a dog treed cat an’ he snipped that cowboy’s noose.
But he didn’t even hear ‘em, when they hollered, "turn ‘im loose!"

We laid ol’ Trope away next day, an’ though he’ze known by but a few.
We couldn’t stack ‘em in the church, an’ they filled the praisin’ pew.

The fire and brimstone preacher, there at the foursquare I attend.
Allowed "they just ain’t no greater deed than dyin’ fer a friend!"

In comin’ days I‘ll miss Ol Trope, like a tree would miss it’s bark.
But I thought "old pal you measured up, - I’d say you made your mark!!"

© Paul D. Hatch
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.


Oh well, you get the idea.........

I doubt you'll find much in the way of cowboy poetry that is any better than the stuff that a friend of mine from Snowflake, Arizona puts together. His name is Rolf Flake and he has been writing good rhymes for half a century. Rolf is a real honest to goodness cowman and his stuff comes from real life as well as the occasional fantasy. I'd recommend his new book to anyone wanting to read some good stuff that will help get the taste of mine out of your mouth. His new book is called "Cloud Watchers", and if you are interested, drop me a line and I'll put you onto it.

"Keep astride of the tree, both feet in the stirrups, and far enough back of the horn to maintain your masculinity"...

(You cowgirls figger it out yourselves)


If you like country stuff and cowboy poetry,
you'll love the pages at the

They were kind enough to include me on their pages!


His stuff ain't free, but it's worth the price. If you ever have a chance to catch him in person, I'll guarantee some of the best entertainment you've ever enjoyed! Baxter is also a nice feller who'll take a minute out of his busy schedule to visit and encourage.
He's kinda the "poet hero" of most of us wanna be's..

(928) 586-1077

Coyote Cowboy Company · P.O. Box 2190 · Benson, Arizona 85602

Tell him you found them from my website if you think of it.