Special:  Cowboy Love Poetry

Complete list of cowboy love poetry


E. A. Brininstool
Classic Cowboy Poetry

Debra Hill
The Yellow Slicker

Jeff Streeby
Johnny Has Gone for a Cowboy

LaVonne Houlton
Spring Love  



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Drear are the prairies; the ranges are silent;
Mournfully whispers each soft, passing breeze;
Down in the canyon and eddying murmur
Echoes the sigh through the giant pine trees.
Lone are the trails on the brown, dusty mesa,
Up where the gems of the star-world peep through;
Sadly the night-bird is plaintively calling --
'Nita, Juanita, I'm longing for you!

Out where the herds dot the range in the Springtime;
Out where the flowers you loved nod and sway,
Memory brings me a vision of sadness,
Brings me a dream of a once-happy day.
Over the trails you are riding beside me,
Under the canopied heavens of blue;
Smiling the love that your lips have repeated --
'Nita, Juanita, I'm longing for you!

When steals the night with its grim, dusky shadows,
As 'round the herd I am jogging along,
Your gentle face seem to lighten the darkness,
Each vagrant breeze seems to whisper a song;
Whispers a melody sweetly entrancing,
Telling me, dear, of your love ever true;
Whispers and echo which sets my heart dancing --
'Nita, Juanita, I'm longing for you!

by E. A. Brininstool from Trail Dust of a Maverick, 1914


"Juanita" is recited by Dick Morton on his Cowboy Classics CD (2006)

See our feature on E. A. Brininstool here.



The Yellow Slicker
     (To "Miss Oleta" Nichols, Pioneer, Lady, Texan) 

She wore his yellow slicker,
Though it almost drug the ground,
It seemed to make things easier,
As if He was still around.

He’d left her some big boots,
She was gonna’ have to fill,
But his old yellow slicker,
It seemed to give her the Will.

The Will to keep on going,
The Will to be wise and strong,
The Will to make their dreams come true,
And remember, where she belonged.

She wore it to feed the cattle,
And when she cleaned the stalls,
She hung it on that high nail by the door,
And remembered He was tall.

She wore it every time,
Storm clouds came rushing in,
She even wore it sometimes,
Just so the tears would not begin.

She wore it to keep the wet out,
And to hold the cold at bay,
It eased the hardness of the ground,
Each time she knelt to pray.

She wore it to chop the tanks,
And when she mended fence,
She wore it on the best of days,
And on the ones that made no sense.

She wore it when it was ragged,
And had completely lost it’s charm,
Because, if she was inside of it,
She was back inside his arms.

It’s just an old yellow slicker,
But it made her life complete,
It reminded her what’s important,
And it kept her on her feet.

She wore it across a lifetime,
And she never felt alone,
She raised their kids, she raised their cows,
And she made their farm a home.

And when she’s gone, she tells the kids,
Just hang it on that nail in the barn,
Then look at it, and in your hearts know,
His yellow slicker, saved the farm.

1996 Debra Coppinger Hill, All Rights Reserved



Debra Hill is one of our Honored Guests. Read more of her poetry here.


Johnny Has Gone for a Cowboy

She sits alone in her rocking chair,
a Spanish comb in her golden hair,
the gift of a lover so fine and fair.
Her Johnny has gone for a cowboy.

He came to her on a summer's day.
She knew at once that he would not stay.
She rued the hour he would ride away.
Her Johnny has gone for a cowboy.

She pledged her troth and she pledged her soul.
She pledged herself, entire and whole.
Her heart, it paid a shameful toll.
Her Johnny has gone for a cowboy.

She gave to him a love untold.
He took from her the silver and gold
to buy a mount full strong and bold.
Her Johnny has gone for a cowboy.

He spoke her soft and he spoke her fair.
He gave her a comb for her golden hair.
He rode away on a nightblack mare.
Her Johnny has gone for a cowboy.

She begged him stay but to no avail.
Her heart was lorn in her sad travail.
She lost her love to the cattle trail.
Her Johnny has gone for a cowboy.

'Neath the prairie sun and the prairie rain,
these long, long years her love is lain
in an unmarked grave on a grassy plain.
Her Johnny has gone for a cowboy.

She sits alone in her rocking chair,
a Spanish comb in her silver hair,
the gift of a lover so fine and fair.
Her Johnny has gone for a cowboy.

2000 Jeff Streeby

Jeff tells us "This is based on a 15th century Irish widow's lament called Johnny Has Gone for a Soldier.  It has been set to music by Harry Wolfe on his new CD entitled This Ain't No Bull.

Jeff Streeby is one of our Honored Guests. Read more of his poetry here.




Spring Love

"In Spring a young man's fancy turns
To thoughts of love," they say,
But I'm a little different,
'Cause my mind don't work that way.

In Spring I think of new-born lambs,
And foals on wobbly legs,
And settin' hens, all ruffled up,
When someone takes their eggs.

In Spring, I think of fresh green grass,
A-growin' in the sun,
And meltin' snow-chunks tumblin' down
Across the old mill run.

In Spring, I think of buddin' flowers,
And fawns tucked in the shade;
I think of rich, clean-smellin' earth,
Just turned up by a spade.

I think of brand-new things on earth,
And sparkliin' skies above.....
I guess the sayin's right at that,
For all those things are love!

2006, LaVonne Houlton, from her "Cowpoke Philosophy" series
This poem may not be reprinted or reposted without the author's written permission.

Read more of LaVonne Houlton's poetry here.   LaVonne Houlton is a Lariat Laureate.




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