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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.


Search:

Poetry table.

First Previous Next Last
IDBook TitleComposerIndexPagesAuthorPoem TitleFirst LinesKeywords
24817 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 13 Ray Owens An Ever Dwindlin' Breed I wonder what he's thinkin'; what's runnin' thru his mind He's just sittin there a-starin'; though it's plain to all he's blind
24818 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 16 Ray Owens Color Blind We were sittin', tlakin' horses; my old friend and I that day Enjoyin' one another's comp'ny an' just passin time away
24819 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 20 Ray Owens Are You a Cowboy, Mister? Are you a cowboy, Mister? You're dressed like one, I see I'm not s'posed to talk to strangers. That's what Momma says to me
24820 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 22 Ray Owens A Man to Take the Tally Grandpa, I've got a question; somethin' I'm not sure about, It's a sayin' I've heard folks use that I can't quite figure out.
24821 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 25 Ray Owens Men to Ride the River With A man to ride the river with, he is a special kind And lookin' backward through my life, there's some that come to mind
24822 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 27 Ray Owens A Real Man Men come in diff'rent sizes, diff'rent shapes and widths and lengths They all have diff'rent weaknesses, as well as diff'rent strengths
24823 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 29 Ray Owens Neighbor There's more to bein' a neighbor than bein' "just htose folks over there" It takes a special person; one who's got a lotta care
24824 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 31 Ray Owens Drugstore Conversation Hospital up in Amarillo is where I been beddin' down And man, I'm here to tell ya, I was proud to leave that town.
24825 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 36 Ray Owens Grandpa was a Cussin' Man My Grandpa was a cussin' man, the best I ever heard I'd sit in pure amazement as I listened to each word
24826 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 38 Ray Owens Alibi Ike There's no way to tell of the number of men I've met in my lifetime and won't see again But there's sure been some characters come down the pike
24827 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 40 Ray Owens Death Came Callin' Now, death just ain't a pleasant thing to face or contemplate We think somehow we might be able to pass up that fateful date
24828 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 42 Ray Owens A Sound on the Wind If you think you're a man who's got too big to cry Then you've still got some growin' to do If you'd hate for someone to spot a tear in your eye, Well, friend, I feel sorry for you.
24829 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 44 Ray Owens Pretty Yellow Flowers Grandmom! Come, and lookie here! called the happy little girl Her eyes were brightly beaming, and her smile lit up the world.
24830 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 46 Ray Owens Reflections of a Granddad While trav'lin' through this life I've seen a lot of wondrous things Grand Canyon and Niagara falls and wild geese on the wing
24831 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 48 Ray Owens The Special Magic Room We've been remod'lin' on our house a full ten years or so And yet, it still ain't finished; there's lots of work to go To get it like we wanted, the way we dreamed about When we bought our little home place out here on the rural route.
24832 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 50 Ray Owens Holdin' Hands I guess I maybe was fifteen; or sixteen, ,but no more When I discovered somethin' that I hadn't known before It was one of life's great pleasures
24833 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 53 Ray Owens Sparklin' Dark Brown Eyes Now and then I'll get to thinkin' 'bout how good God's been to me He's done way more than keep the promises in Malachi, Chapter Three
24834 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 54 Ray Owens Shelby's Hill There's a pile of dirt in our back yard that's been there sev'ral years At least a dozen, maybe more; and to some folks it appears To have no useful purpose
24835 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 56 Ray Owens The Old Cowboy and His Quilt It's a quilt my Mama made for me, was what he'd always say When someone asked about it; then he'd quickly turn away. Hopin' that we hadn't noticed how his voice had husky grown,
24836 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 58 Ray Owens Daydreams Like a soul that's caught between two worlds In diff'rent spans of time He's a misfit in his "Golden Years" While searchin' for the rhyme
24837 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 60 Ray Owens Recollections A man may lose a sweetheart but her mem'ry stays behind Tucked away back in the corners and recesses of his mind The same is true of by-gone days
24838 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 61 Ray Owens Coffee Break Old men gathered at mid-morning In the twilight of their lives; Drinking coffee, reminiscing while a short ways off their wives Keep a watchful lookout on them Tryin' not to let it show That they know their days are numbered
24839 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 63 Ray Owens Rememberin' Buck Now and then you meet a feller That's the sort you're proud to know; They leave deep and lastin' footprints As down life's road they go.
24840 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 64 Ray Owens The Schoolmarm She wasn't very pretty; fact o' bizness, downright plain A little tall and gangly and she coulda stood to gain Some paddin' in the places
24841 Cowboy Poetry: Tracks That Won't Blow Out FC 11 O-10 66 Ray Owens Good Sam Mary A widow lived here years ago Who was famous hereabout For her kindness and a sayin' "would be a shame to throw it out." Folks tell about the time once