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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
26673 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 45 John C. Dofflemyer Trouble Trustin' I have trouble trusin' a man who ain't profane who wears thet holy look, reborn naive again, who's quick to tip his halo so clean 'n pure, it's plain, exclamation, punctuation, obeys, pose, trust, angel
26674 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 46 John C. Dofflemyer Drought The ridgetops lay like ribs of a carcass clean where oaks stand leafless now, old sentinels, jess roosts for vultures solemn left to glean what coyotes leave of other animals. mild, whisker, drought, daily, dloven, domestic, wild
26675 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 46 John C. Dofflemyer Christmas List 1990 If Santa read my list, a single word, and has the time to spare on christmas eve and runs across some storms thet he can herd-I'll be the first to say thet I believe! improve, entertain, steady, rain, soak, elves, reindeer
26676 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 47 John C. Dofflemyer 1.75 A gray may day with rain on short dry feed cattle shipped and gone. She returns as if there's some plan to her infidelity the five short springs sycamores, seed, storm, climate change, ignorance
26677 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 48 John C. Dofflemyer The Gate It sags an' it drags before four mounted men, his foot hits the leather this time an' again, as they know without lookin' what the boy has to learn earn, spoke, proclaim, eliminate
26678 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 49 John C. Dofflemyer The Scent The scent of cow's cud hung with flyless dung in blades matted and fading and the smell of a calf could be proved by the track last laid on larger ones leaving. sulphur, cigarette smoke, wild, flush, traffic
26679 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 50 John C. Dofflemyer Old Ladies I've followed old ladies the long way around protectin' their babies and stoppin' to sound off to me, my dog or my horse dust, fuss, dog, calf, mother, path, baby
26680 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 51 John C. Dofflemyer Goddamn Clothes The hillside's bare and short of hair, clay-red instead of blond, and damn few trees still with green leaves upclose or there beyond. The Animal Rightists of the '50's, flies, puzzles, packed, shed, torn
26681 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 52 John C. Dofflemyer Waterholes Drought is no arena ride you can turn out, the draw is dry for men thet you've forgot about. The waterholes are cracked 'neath leafless trees, survive, fortune, lifeless, shrunked, heart, mind
26682 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 53 John C. Dofflemyer Wood And Steel The steel trap's sprung in a buckeye tree and the bark's grown tight 'round its jaws; how many men been here before me, how many men without laws? crust, rust, strong, designs
26683 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 54 John C. Dofflemyer Explain I find thet man don't understan' much more than a shallow word an' poetry will always be a feelin' escapin' the herd. It's in the child and in the wild, street, mystery, canyons, random, language, bars
26684 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 55 John C. Dofflemyer Shepherd's Song When shepherd's song so stills the silent air beyond the sounds the politicians sell, I'd like a ticket close so I could hear the cowboys sing 'em all, hell, money, folks, poet, delayed, fade
26685 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 55 John C. Dofflemyer The Blame A pretty rotten way to treat a cow, to blame her for the way thet cities grow in spaces where more profit does allow ranchettes and septic tanks repair, ride, bigger, despair, Bob Budd, Wyoming Stock Growers Assoc
26686 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 56 John C. Dofflemyer Treaties A mass of muscle shaped and bred to freely move as one instead, where impulse cues with legs and hands the graceful dance the work demands beyond the street, bloody, fear, trust, choke, dust, jars, danger
26687 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 57 John C. Dofflemyer Disgustin' Stuff I've seen the best intentions in men head'd to the trough turn soft an' damn near foolish 'cause they nev'r get enough, jess forgettin' how to live without politics, manure, quite, traits
26688 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 58 John C. Dofflemyer The Trail The coyote track in haste to keep in sight pursues the cloven hooves thet move ahead behind a bobcat print thet's slowed when bucks begin the fight, erase, chase, pieces, meat, worst, cursed
26689 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 59 John C. Dofflemyer Some Spot I only ask thet you might leaves us be and save the pure for your own sweet behind, refrain from huggin' bark off ev'ry tree and tryin' to make Ma Nature fit your mind. cement, rare, survive, share, beast
26690 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 59 John C. Dofflemyer Her Dry Breath A drought jess seems to suck the life from trees and earthy orientations, leafless; the beast is weak in man, the wind can tease the frost in dusty cakes, a powder mess. land, churns, kiss, boil, load, moment, spirit
26691 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 60 John C. Dofflemyer The Whiskey Rain The whiskey rain premature for feed but timely for drought dust and the sane smells a shepherd needs the dusk thunderstorm brilliance, truth, coffee, booze, scents, turbulence
26692 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 61 John C. Dofflemyer Hear Her Comin' A thunder beats inside of me from clouds of doubt, the drought and dust; hear her comin'? I know it's she who hangs in waitin' jess to see me naked, gentle, cold, disagree, trust, thunder
26693 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 62 John C. Dofflemyer Mongolian Beef Different woks and meltin' pots find calves and wildlife dodgin' shots from refugees, the view-nam war, killin' mor'n the worst predator. In packs they roam shoot, killed, wild, beef, car, anger, expound, dollar, Nouveau Purists of the '90's
26694 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 63 John C. Dofflemyer The Twin The fawn bleat terrorizes the dry canyon to silence as all size eyes search the treeless slopes of wild oats the doe blows eagle, defiant, escape, silence, Animal Rightists of the '90's
26695 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 64 John C. Dofflemyer No Antidote I become confused and sometimes amused about these animals rights thet protect the dolphin when tuna they're killin' and cannin' for bigoted bites. christmas goose, escargot, shells, kitchen, bacteria, diseases, pets, Greg Quakenbush
26696 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 66 John C. Dofflemyer Rodeo Poet I pack a leg limpin' with dull pain, (an old habit with the cold, barometric low, a dry storm with no rain); jammed with buckin' too many bottom dreams, beast, dare, cold, unpredictable
26697 Muses Of The Ranges FC 11 D-28 67 John C. Dofflemyer The Difference A cowboy tends to figger things in terms he understands, and the more he learns, the less he know, as his mind expands; ain't nothin' certain in this life, guarantees, business, soul, money