Friday, October 05, 2007

Hi there all:

I want to address a couple of things here today.

I got an e-mail last week from a fella (?) calling himself ShelterBelt Slim or Yardley Vanderwench. I'm sure many of you got it also as it was sent to a lot of people. All in the "To:" address bar also so now there are lots more addresses available to anyone! When you send a bulk e-mail, put all the addresses in the "BCC:" address bar. They'll go where you want them to but the e-mail addresses won't be visible to the recipients. There. That's one thing out of the way.

Anyway, the poem is a rant about Cowboy Poets not being real cowboys. The language isn't great but that isn't why I'm not posting it right now. I'd be willing to post it here for the opposing viewpoint kind of thing but I won't post under a psuedonymn. I have a good idea who it was from but I'm not saying. Here's the e-mail I sent back to "Yardley":

Hi there:

Interesting poem. Not exactly on the mark but I would be willing to post it on the blog except that I won't post anything under a psuedonymn. If ya can't sign it, I won't post it. A real Cowboy isn't afraid to let the world know what he thinks or how he feels.

Actually, I often have the same feeling when I see city boys and girls getting the gigs while those of us who are or were the real deal are pushed aside.

If you want to stand up and be counted, let me know, otherwise I guess it's all just air.

If I get a reply with a real name, I'll post the poem for everyone. Like I say, the language isn't great in a place or two. Obviously written "with a mad on" but I understand the sentiment, even though I don't agree with it.

As I've often mentioned, I like to get a good discussion going here as there are a lot of concerns we all feel out here that we're reluctant to bring out in front of everyone. That's one of the things Blogs are for. To vent.

Be good and I'll be b ack later.


Teresa Burleson said...

The language the author of this poem uses tells me that he/she is not a
person of integrity or morals. Therefore, their opinion of Cowboy Poetry
has no relevance.

While there are some that write and recite poetry of a life they only
dream of living, there are more that write about the life that they live
on a daily basis. I see it as a way to document history for later
generations that will possibly only have Cowboy Poetry to tell of a life
in the agriculture and livestock industry. (We certainly can not depend
on Hollywood to give an accurate documentation.)

I perform and write Cowgirl Poetry. My poetry is not about life on a big
ranch because that is not the life I live (although I wish it were.)
When I write poetry I am inspired by things and events that happen in my

My life and inspiration consists of 10 acres in Weatherford, Texas with
a few horses and sometimes 8 to 10 calves and a job in town. I also find
my inspiration in other poets such as Larry McWhorter, Joel Nelson, Red
Steagall, Buster McLaury, Waddy Mitchell, Yvonne Hollenbeck, Doris Daley
and several other REAL cowboys that write about a life that so many of
us only dream of. And they did not stop being cowboys to become poets.
That would be cutting off their noses to spite their face. So they are
still fixing fence as the poem says and at the same time they are
writing stirring words that have rhyme and meter to document a history
that I am very proud of.

And I will continue to share my thoughts with those that are willing to
listen. So if the author of this offensive poem does not appreciate
Cowboy Poetry, he/she can simply not listen to it.

Thank you for your time and for keeping Western entertainment alive,

Teresa Burleson

Bobbie Hunter said...

Okay, Larry. This is the kind of poetry I'm fighting to keep under covers. There isn't one sentiment in this poem that couldn't be expressed by using less offensive words. The meaning would be the same only my eyes wouldn't be watering, my ears wouldn't be burning, my face wouldn't be red, and I wouldn't feel the need to wash my computer's mouth out with soap!

kennethwillard1 said...

Larry, am wondering what kind of misplaced and ill informed mal-content would use an alius or pseudo, such as shelterbelt slim or yardley vanderwrench? This is a depraved individual whose mind is akin to that of a puzzle with part of the pieces missing. While I have not had the misfortune to read his, or her, so called poetry, I have got the picture. If Bobbie Hunter says "it's bad", then it's bad. Further, since when is it an absolute requirement to be a real cowboy in order to write, or recite, cowboy poetry and song? With the passing of time, the work ethic, the moral fiber, and overall contributions of the cowboy are increasingly recognized by society and deemed to have been one of the most important and productive eras in the history of our country. It is important that we preserve that memory, those ethics and contributions through any and all means possible, including verse, song and other art forms. It is a good and essential model for present and future generations to live and abide by. Though it is doubtful, the likes of mr. or miz shelterbelt? Slimemoss? donkey dung? or whaterver? has the mental capacity to even recognize, let alone abide by, work by, or live by any code of ethics in any matter shape or form.


Larry Maurice said...

Robert Lewis Stevenson wasn't a pirate but he wrote a couple of very
entertaining books. Larry McMurtry is on record as never having been a
cowboy and really isn't very fond of Cowboys in general???? The reason
people(who think they should) don't get invited to the big shows and
consequently don't make much money in the Cowboy Poetry business is that
they are just not that good. Nobody goes to these shows to be preached at,
educated or enlightened. They go to be entertained.
The person who wrote the poem is entitled to his/her opinion. But in the
writing is probably the reason this person is having trouble with the
performers. I've always been of the opinion that anyone who is driven to
public condemnation of anything to do with the arts, either doesn't
understand it, is afraid of it or just plain jealous of it. When a "poet"
has to resort to crude vernacular, bath room humor or any kind of non-self
effacing degradation, their lack of writing ability and their understanding
and appreciation of the English language becomes blatantly evident.
"Western Verse" is not considered in the "shock" category.
Although there
have been reams of ribald poetry written by westerners, the performance
type "Cowboy Poetry" of this era is meant for an audience that is looking
for a more bucolic and non-confrontational form of literary
In the entertainment business it's not "Who you know", it's "Who
you!" If you are known for being a complainer and hard to work with, your
chances of getting asked anywhere, let alone the bigger events, become
fewer and fewer as time goes on. If your material and your performance
skills are exceptional and you can sell tickets, the promoters will
generally try to accommodate your peculiarities for the sake of the cash
box. The line between being demanding and just plain hard to work with is
pretty fine and most inexperienced entertainers don't realize when they
have crossed over.
Richard Rogers of Rogers & Hammerstein was a fantastic composer/song writer
but he never went on a concert tour. He knew, HE was not an entertainer!
C ya

Larry Maurice