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FOLK COLLECTION 11: The Skaggs Foundation Cowboy Poetry Collection

Date of Items: 1890-present
Register Prepared by: Randy Williams and Susan Gross, April 2004
Register Updated by: Randy Williams, 23 December 2009
Excel database transfered to MYSQL and uploaded (replacing PHP data): Colin Jackson, Fall 2010
MYSQL database updated: Randy Williams, January 2012
Linear Feet:20

Historical Note & Provenance

Folk Coll 11 is Utah State University's cowboy poetry collection. The collection, originally created by a generation donation by the L. J. and Mary Skaggs Foundation, includes books gathered during a fieldwork project in the early 1980s to document cowboy poetry in the U.S. west (see Folk Coll 11f). From this important fieldwork project came the impetus for the first Cowboy Poetry Gathering held in January 1985 in Elko, Nevada. Since that time, each January, the Fife Folklore Archives staff take the collection and Access database (that details each book, poem, author, first line and key words), to the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering for offsite use. Through University purchases and generation donations from poets and collectors, this collection continues to grow.

Scope and Content

The collection consists of 20 linear feet of books on cowboy poetry, including press and self published works. The collection can be accessed through USU Libraries online catalog.

As well, poem titles and keywords found in each book in the collection are included in the database below. To use, type in the search term. Tip: Try and use an uncommon word from the poem to ensure less "hits." For instance, if you enter "boots" you will get many hits; but if you enter "bones" you will most liley get fewer "hits" or poems and find the item you seek faster. To return to the search page, click "home" at the bottom of the page.


Poetry table.

First Previous Next Last
IDBook TitleComposerIndexPagesAuthorPoem TitleFirst LinesKeywords
22537 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 11 Lucy S. Burnham My Guiding Star Dear little arms so soft and white, That twine around my neck each night, Through you I catch a glimmer far Of heaven, dear arms, my guiding star.
22538 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 12 Lucy S. Burnham When You're Away It is morning, dearest husband, And as from my bed I rise, Out upon the dawning With its beauty rests my eyes.
22539 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 13 Lucy S. Burnham Wings My hands are filled with homey tasks, But my mind may wander free, Beyond the pleasant valley here Whereve I wish to be.
22540 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 14 Lucy S. Burnham The Sage I asked an old man, bent and gray, "Do hearts grow old, does love decay?" He winked at me and whispered low, "Alas, my dear, I do not know."
22541 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 14 Lucy S. Burnham O, Little Road O, little road that leads to home, Over the winding hill, My eager feet will never stop Till they cross the sacred hill.
22542 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 15 Lucy S. Burnham House Across The Street There's a house on our street quite near my own Not just a house but a happy home, With a yard fairly littered by dogs and toys, Brought there by neighborhood girls and boys.
22543 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 16 Lucy S. Burnham The Common Man Yes, I have understanding for the man Who earns his bread by tilling of the soil.
22544 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 17 Lucy S. Burnham Mental Poise Just live one day at a time, dear, And each moment of that day, As sand grains pass through the hour-glass, Lighten your burden this way.
22545 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 18 Lucy S. Burnham Retrospect I love the hour of twilight here, End of my busy days, Alone with me in the twilight, To ponder upon life's ways.
22546 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 19 Lucy S. Burnham If I have Failed If I have failed in you, my son, I've failed in all that I have done.
22547 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 20 Lucy S. Burnham My Gift To Life My son, I look into your clear, blue eyes, And I must raise my head a bit to see, For you have grown so tall these last few months, It's hard to see you as you used to be.
22548 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 21 Lucy S. Burnham The Shelter Of Home A fierce storm is raging, it knocks at our door, It shrieks and is gone with a passionate roar.
22549 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 21 Lucy S. Burnham Creating Beauty A woman's long, slim fingers Plying wool and thread, Harmonizing colors, Gold and blue and red.
22550 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 22 Lucy S. Burnham Fairies' Annual Ball The fairies held their annual ball, Out on my lawn last night; They danced among the flowers there, All in the bright moonlight.
22551 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 23 Lucy S. Burnham Soft Curtains Of Dreams Don't be afraid of the night, little lad, There is nothing to fear at all, For the dark is a curtain of dreams, dear lad, That softly about you will fall.
22552 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 24 Lucy S. Burnham Birthdays Birthdays are such happy times When the children gather round, And fairly make the rafters shake With songs and joyful sound.
22553 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 25 Lucy S. Burnham Grandma She asked us to call her Nanna, Or mom, if we'd prefer; She loved us all so dearly, But grandma bothered her
22554 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 26 Lucy S. Burnham Values Life's values are mixed a bit, dear, In yoru lovely, little pate, So glad to find what's wrong dear, Before it was too late.
22555 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 27 Lucy S. Burnham April Rain Old mother nature weeps today, I wonder why, I wonder why. I couldn't say at all, my dear, Why she should ever cry.
22556 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 27 Lucy S. Burnham Night Song The wind sings softly through the trees, A night-bird sends its wild, sweet call; The cricket hums his cheerful lay, While cooling shadows softly fall.
22557 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 28 Lucy S. Burnham A Boy And His Dog They pass down my street most every day; A barefoot boy and a dog at play; The boy's straw hat is tattered and torn, His overalls are faded and worn.
22558 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 29 Lucy S. Burnham The Robins Lament This is the story as told to me By a robin in my old elm tree; His poor heart was filled with many fears, And if birds cry, he shed bitter tears.
22559 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 30 Lucy S. Burnham I have Often Wondered I have often wondered, haven't you, Why flowers love the morning dew And lift their small and shining face Aglow with heaven's radiant grace.
22560 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 31 Lucy S. Burnham The Wise Are Slow To Speak The fool has said there is no God, The wise are slow to speak; He hears a voice in the sea's deep roar, And the quiet of mountain peak.
22561 Drift Wood FC 11 B-59 32 Lucy S. Burnham Night Why should I fear the night? It is the time for rest, Soft curtains drawn against the day; Sometimes I like it best.