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A Good Way to Grow

Ain’t No Cowboy Yet
April 12, 2020
To the Gentle Giants
April 19, 2020

It seems to me that a man must always be growing, learning - expanding his horizons if you will. Like a lot of folks, the older I get the more I realize how much there is that I don't know. Much of it I don't need to know but the things I want to learn and experience, traits I'd admire acquiring, I get mostly by associating with, hanging out with, people I want to become like. I respect a good, positive attitude, a keen mind that can think outside the box and folks that lift others up. Of course, if you don't have a healthy sense of humor, don't apply. Jimmy was just such a man. Looking back, I wish I would have spent more time with him and been more aware of the gifts he was passing along.

A Good Way to Grow

My friend Jimmy chose saddle broncs
As his way to play
But I met him a carpenterin’
It was our job by day

Though he banged nails to earn his keep
(We all do what we can)
Make no mistake about his love
Jimmy was a cowboyin', rodeo man

He wore his boots with ridin' heels
Whether on saddle or tin roof
He had that softly speaking way
Non-cowboys only spoof

Two summers we built pole barns
for hay, cattle or sheep
And some for workin’ farmers
Their equipment in to keep

Round Valley weren’t near home
We both lived far away
So we up an’ shared the ride
Doing so saved our pay

Each Friday we’d split a six pack
When our pay we’d draw
Gave us both some come down time
and loosened us to jaw

I fancied his calm demeanor
His quiet, capable style
Nothing got his back up
I never saw him a'rile

Learnin’ can be a subtle thing,
Often don’t know it 'til after
Lessons taught to ‘n from work
Or heard whilst settin’ a rafter

Now Jimmy wasn't teachin'
Least not so with intention
But if you'd sense to listen close
You'd pick up some retention

One particlar’ drive I 'member
Back from Covelo one day
I asked the man about his wife
To hear what he would say

"Ol' Peg, well she's a good ol' gal
She always irons my Wranglers"
"That's all", I thought, “no loving word,
Nor whinin’ of their ‘tanglers”?

Right then it struck me curious
No praising bride summation
But o'er the years I've come to value
His words and education

For I believe Ol' Jimmy meant
To tell me true and make
Me realize Peggy was complete -
Creased jeans were icing on the cake

He's just one more cowboy
That I've been blessed to know
But swapping time with all of them
Has been a real good way to grow

By, Rik Goodell

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