Link to Utah USU Special Collection home page

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
27076 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 49 Marleen Bussma White Out WInd screamed across the high plains where the grass had browned and dried. It carried snow upon its back then spread it thick and wide. storm, seized, collar, reins, guard, defeat
27077 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 51 Marleen Bussma The Devil's Lair A brazen breeze has shed the chilly coat it wore upon the San Francisco Peaks. The dust rides with it like a hired hand forgive, mankind, peace, deceased, superstition
27078 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 53 Marleen Bussma Pullin' Leather Bronc riders pace the area as they make their deals with God. They'll learn if he was list's nin' when they give the gate a nod. Bill envies these skilled conscious, skill, pride, Sloppy Joe, Jimm Carter, tribute
27079 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 55 Marleen Bussma The Outlaw I never knew a gentle touch that nuzzled, rubbed or brushed. My fated clash with humans saw me slashed and gashed, not crushed. My spirit blazed like wildfire drunk, caveman, buffalo, boss, helpless, rodeo
27080 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 57 Marleen Bussma Three Toes He lusts for blood that's warm and drips from throats of fresh killed prey. Obsession drives his craving for the victims that he'll slay. Mere hunger's not the force that strikes with terror, pursuits, executes, amateur, survive
27081 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 59 Marleen Bussma A Woman's Wiles The canyon walls once echoed with the violence and greed of cattle barons' crude malignant appetites. Their breed would prey upon the small man craft, dream, angry soul, spawn, Amazon, jail
27083 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 61 Marleen Bussma Mustache Maude Winona nearly has outlived frontier noteworthiness, discounted like a fallen woman, damned and dispossessed. The railroad never will pass through, dreams, alcohol, rancher, graveyards,Theodore Roosevelt National Park
27084 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 63 Marleen Bussma Stagecoach Mary The .38 is smokin'. She has fired every shell. Her adversary's emptied-out his six-shooter as well. The mission employs both these hot-heads doing heavy work. smirk, damages, dream, redeems, failure, interview
27085 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 65 Marleen Bussma The Petticoat Revolt Pale petticoats flap in the breeze that bears their righteous rage. The sisterhood is mounted, riding full out, set to wage a war against the demon that dispatched domestic bliss social style, warriors, pretest, mobile bar
27086 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 67 Marleen Bussma Scrapin' By The west was hard as bedrock as it kicked and bucked untamed. It trampled countless women, left them mangled, mauled and maimed. Some girls who bloomed grew beauty, faithful, God, gambling, trade, gambling
27087 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 69 Marleen Bussma War Paint I am moving Robe Woman and have seen twenty-three summers. I am the daughter of Crawler and sister of One Hawk. The Hunkpapa Sioux are my people. hunted, ancestors, reservation, peace, danger, promise
27088 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 71 Marleen Bussma Bird Woman Lewis and Clark did not name a single landmark to honor their teenage interpreter during the two years of their expedition. camp, instruments, records, journals, language, buffalo track shield
27089 Is She Country? FC 11 B-76 73 Marleen Bussma A Bad Reputation The flat dry land lifts up its skirt and runs into the hills. A searing sun sits high above the desert where it spills its heat onto a loping coyote, western tale, Sonoran Desert, outcast, reputation, replace, regret
27090 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 8 Vess Quinlan By Any Other Name Just short of 65 eating nitro like peppermints cranky and cynical he knew firsthand what poverty can do to a man cowboying for rich folks taught him what money does. wisdom, impress, payphone, shy, spooky
27091 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 11 Sue Wallis Good Clean Land Still Wild You'll never understand cow country's love for our ranching land still wild and free and clean until you've drunk your water from a tumbling creek drawn your breath on a pure, sagebrush flowers, squall, ranchers, earth
27092 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 12 Wallace McRae Our Communion He said, "This bread's my body." He said, "My blood's the wine." "Remember when you take it, the blood and body's mine." Our bodies are this fertile land. organic mud, greedy, cremation, unsanctified, forgive
27093 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 13 Sue Wallis Keeping Her Free Cowfolks ride the Earth proud and tall knowing their business don't hurt her at all raising beef on good grass that'll grow back again just trimming her hair, excrement, pure, naked, special, smile
27094 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 14 Wallace McRae Eminent Domain From the Highland sod, with faith in God, to this land, young and profane, grandad was drawn, long ere the dawn of Eminent Domain. regrets, free enterprise, obligations, threat, train
27095 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 15 Sue Wallis A Hundred Thousand Hungry Wolves Sixty thousand hungry wolves eating cows in Canada another several grand in Minnesota nobody knows how many in Montana which seems to us a fairly decent quota Yellowstone, taxes, extinction, needy, money, homeless
27096 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 16 Wallace McRae Crisis Get the coal out, with a tumult and shout. Yes, tear it out of the ground. There's a crisis to smite and cities to light. There's billions of tons to be found. taxes, swimming pool, guilt, duty, faceless, slave, monster
27097 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 18 Rod McQueary For Steve And Ted Slim comes back, reporting after jeeping through the wood hills. He brings home no surprises, "Times are hard, there, for a drink." It's hot and drouthy, by October, danger, windmill, trail, respect, wildlife problems
27098 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 20 J. B. Allen A Good Lettin Alone Is Worth Two Workins That ol "lonesome" comes a creepin - like a cougar in the night moving silent on them big ol padded feet. Strikin swiftly in the stillness of the high-up moon, honor, reason, dream, challenge, implement
27099 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 22 J. B. Allen Silent Witness The wind had blown for countless years 'cross oceans, lakes and land, as climates changed and creatures lived and died, barely conscious of the puny shapes whirlwinds, pursue, desert, blame, scar, waste
27100 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 24 Buck Ramsey Conservation We've never owned a blade of grass (and, really, nor have you), nor held the title to a cow, but we've herded quite a few. money, mystery, rules, ambiguity
27101 Dry Crik Review (Environmental Issue): Fall 1991 John C. Dofflemyer FC 11 D-20 25 Alibates Ranch Belonging I'll ride these westward ridges slow and rein this hasty horse back so he'll wait for home, though unimpressed the sun is setting in the west. darkness, past, judged, tumbleweed, harmless