Called to Write
I must put pen to paper
Maybe type out a word or two
Document thoughts ‘n feelings
Communicate 'tween me ‘n you
It's not my words are fancy
Don't 'spect they're special t' read
But they're all tusslin' 'round inside me
Bustin’ 'em out is my true need
Sometimes it'll be a story
Some pages of rambling prose
Time t’ time I go t’ rhymin'
Tho that's chancy Heaven knows!
I set store by talkin' vulnerable
Which means tellin' from heart deep
Without that trust, well, it's just chatter
And we share nothing to know or keep
Talkin’ safe; News, Weather 'n Sports
How do we have rooted, lovin' friendship
Short of speakin’, “From the Heart Reports”? So while you visit on my site
This here front porch URL
Sit back with cup of favorite brew
Hold, enjoy the words I'll tell Get comfy in your easy chair
Call ol Shep o'er to your feet
Slow yer pace and mind a mite
Let's you and I just meet While you are ingesting
The musings in this place
My hope is that a knowing smile
Will come rest upon yer face Or maybe not a smile a’tall
Perhaps a subtle nod
Unbidden will expose at last
Our tie by grace of God
Wandering this cyber land
Will by these shared ideas
Come each to understand And when you've taken in my words
These ponderings of mine
We'll no longer be just strangers
But connected by design God built us not to solo
But built us to connect
And when we share our inner mind
That's what we do I 'spect Well, thanks fer stoppin' by
It's been my pleasure to palaver
I'm called to greet a million folk
Before I up'n go cadaver Come back again to this ol’ porch
Stop, visit when in the 'hood
Drop by and read my latest
I truly wish you would
By, Rik Goodell
Describing my life in any manner resembling conventional is challenging. Looking it over, there isn’t much normal to it and if it had to be encapsulated in a word or two, they might be “exceptional adventure”. Come to think of it, that may be why I have long carried the handle, "Yonder".
Rik hangs his hat in Whitefish, Montana where he pens cowboy poetry based on his own experiences - and a little imagination - gathered in a very diverse and blessed life. Among that diversity has been a small cow-calf operation, work on a horse ranch, years as a deputy sheriff ... well you get the picture. His poetry exemplifies his deep-seated respect for “The Cowboy Way” which he promotes with passion, humor and integrity.
I n my teens, I got to work at a desert horse ranch where I was taught to ride, saddle, hoof-pick and curry horses. It was also there that, at thirteen years old, I was introduced to pistol shooting and my natural gift as a marksman erupted. Four years of military service as a Small Arms Marksmanship Instructor followed during which I was a member of the base pistol team and once won the Hawaii State Pistol Championship in the ‘Expert’ class. I went on to win gold and silver medals at a California State pistol Championship and became designated a Lifetime Master in Outdoor Pistol by the NRA . After military service I joined the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department and had the rare honor of being awarded the unique Distinguished Expert Medal while still in the LASD Sheriff’s Academy.
I was a drama major in high school and college. While I dreamed of acting in Westerns, I never did but I landed a part for a year and a half run in a Hollywood play followed by acting and directing in various community theaters, radio programs and a few TV gigs. Although drawn to writing poetry and prose during my high school years, I didn’t actually get my first article (about motorcycles) published until in my 30's and then I wrote a monthly magazine column for twelve years.
Although I worked on a horse ranch throughout my teens, and I did operate my own small, cow-calf operation for several years, I don't pretend to be a cowboy. When I write Cowboy Poetry, it comes from a deep respect for the Cowboy Life and values, and my passionate belief that "The Cowboy", especially in these confused times, is the last best hope for America. When I write it is from muscle memory or my study of history and a sincere appreciation for my God-given blessings and a mindful awareness of the adventures I've been granted in this life.
Cowboying is about essential-ness and consequences - good or bad. There is a justice in being connected to the land, The more densely our cities become populated, the more people and chaos get stuffed into a concrete wilderness, the more anonymous an individual becomes while disrespect for one another grows while a disconnection from the true stuff of life deepens. That’s why I write “Cowboy”. Though I’ve never been a real one, never earned my keep doing the hard work of a cowboy, I can be a Cowboy Poet. By doing so, I hope I am helping to preserve, maybe even grow, the way of the American West and the essential Cowboy Culture.
Rik is married, has two married sons, three grandchildren and lives in Montana.