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Moose Ropin’

The Fencin’ Crew
March 30, 2021
Lefty’s Memorial
April 13, 2021

Moose Ropin'

Levi was a young Buckaroo
Who just plain loved his work
He'd grown up a' cowboyin'
He knew doin’ hard, no shirk

Like a lot of salty cowhands
Levi had his favorite roles
No one ever questioned but what
His was buildin’ horses from foals

They said the man was fork-ed
Meanin’ he rides a bronc real well
He’s the man you wanna call when
You’ve got a snorty one to quell

Up in Idaho one fall mornin’
Cain’t rightly name the year
Over near the Montana border
Levi musta' been bored a'ropin’ steer

He was ridin’ out on a good mount
Levi had built him so he knew
Gazin’ out there across a draw
Got him an idea not thinkin’ it through

He’d spied a big ol mossy critter
Rubbin’ his antlers on a spruce
What better test of a cowpony
Than to try an’ rope a moose?

It didn't look all that challenging
Though them antlers was pretty wide
But, truth be told, they weren't no more
Than some longhorns that he'd tried.

Well he had to jump across a wash
To get close enough for ropin’
It didn't look very wide at all
So he spurred the gelding a’hopin’

First that gelding’s back feet slipped
As the bank gave way on the west
Causin’ both of the horse's forelegs
To trip on the eastern crest

They say they both somersaulted
Over to the Montana side
Good news is neither was serious hurt
If you don’t tally in their pride

One foot was still hangin’ in the stirrup
When Levi finally come to
His head was all foggy an’ spinnin’
Tryin’ to figure where was who

Finally his head started clearin’
After bein’ knocked silly by the force
But his eyes were all rolled back
And he kept sayin’, “Catch my horse”

That gelding was ground-hitch trained
He stood there starin’ down at his rider
As if he wanted to try the moose again
Maybe they’d do another fun glider

Another puncher who'd witnessed it all
Trotted over to render aid
Helpin' Levi up onto his feet while
Praisin' the horsemanship he'd displayed

Levi cain’t remember the rest of that day
But he laughs about it now sayin’
It’s just another memory of
This cowboy life where he’s stayin’

Levi's a mite stove up these days
Cowboyin' down in the Great Basin now
Sure enough every once in a while
Some green hand'll ask him 'bout the how

Ain’t had the nerve to ask him myself
But I’m willin' to bet my pay
Them moose can all rest easy now
Knowin' they're no longer Levi's ropin' prey

By, Rik Goodell
© 2021

This poem was inspired by a 2014 interview of
J D Mackay on “Cowboy Authentic”
Hosted by John Riggs

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