Poems inspired by rural life on the prairies
|The Farmer is King
Oh ring a ding ding! The farmer is king,
Of his ox and his plow and his field,
He gambols all day midst windrows of hay,
Ecstatic that he’s so well-heeled.
He outfoxes bankers and lawyers,
Every day of the year,
And strews their bones in his pasture,
And toasts them with Chateau d’yquem.
His granaries are bursting with riches,
A huge crop is coming again,
He’ll buy another Mercedes,
And wash his feet in champagne.
Olaf Strand was co-operative,
In action, word and thought,
In everything he ever made,
And whatever else he bought.
He joined a farm co-operative,
To buy fuel oil and twine,
And another in the city,
For emeralds and wine.
His grain went to the Pool,
As did his hogs and steers,
To be marketed collectively,
And allay financial fears.
His loyal sons and daughters,
Where faithful to the Code,
They lived and breathed the Co-op Creed,
From which all blessings flowed.
They shared in doing chores,
Like feeding pigs their slop,
And gathering eggs each evening,
From their very own chicken co-op.
To The Horse
Today’s hockey players and their fans, reared in air-conditioned arenas with artificial ice, don’t know anything about their game as it was first played in rural Saskatchewan. This tribute is long overdue,
A plea for an Equine Trophy in the NHL
Hail to thee, thou noble steed,
Exemplar of the Clydesdale breed,
Yes, Percherons and Belgians too,
And bucking Broncs of every hue.
You deserve undying fame,
For selfless giving to The Game,
That first was played on frozen ponds,
With wooden sticks, those magic wands
That with a pair of battered skates,
Turned bashful farm boys into hockey greats.
Buzz Bol, Doug Bentley and his brother Max,
And those who followed in their tracks,
Bert Olmstead, Elmer Lach, the Allens, George and Squee,
And the brothers Metz made history,
With skill and will and endless drill. And now,
Take note that Gordie showed us Howe,
To stickhandle, pass and score,
Starting off with nothing more,
Than ambition and a touch of luck,
With home-made stick and a horse-made puck.
Without that puck our stars would be,
Just ord’ny guys like you and me,
In this Great Game, the praises sung,
Ain’t worth as much as frozen dung.
So round, so firm, so tightly packed.
To stay in shape when soundly whacked,
With blistering slapshot, bounce off a stone,
Yet hang together, tough as bone.
From schoolgirl’s pony to plowman’s horse,
You’ve earned our gratitude, of course,
For such devotion to The Game,
You should be in the Hall of Fame.
Requiescat, thou noble cat,
Thy nine lives all are spent.
I watched thee roam the country round,
When thou wert on pleasure bent.
Thy golden orbs did’st pierce the night,
Like Chevy headlights turned on bright.
What demonic hand or eye,
Could shape thy fierce effrontery,
To make a world where old tomcats,
Would’st be the sole aristocrats?
Come Be My Love
Come be my love and live with me,
On my quarter-section,
I have a soddy, ten by twelve,
Awaiting your inspection.
Its walls are thick, the floor smooth-packed,
The roof is thatched with grass,
The window frees the wayward breeze,
‘Cause I haven’t any glass.
We’ll spend our days in joyful toil,
Unconcerned with riches,
With naught to do with bankers who,
Are rotten sonsabitches.
In winter come the whispering winds,
And gentle fall of snow,
We will bring our ox in for the night,
When the mercury sinks too low.
He’ll lie close by our straw-filled bed,
Where mice play hide and seek,
His body heat will warm our feet,
While we snuggle cheek to cheek.
When morning comes, we three will rise,
To share a gruel confection,
And you will see that life with me,
Is absolute perfection.
So be my love and live with me.
You are my burning passion,
This wealth of mine will all be thine,
In true conjugal fashion.
Call of the Kew Apple
In the broad Kew Apple Valley
Is where I long to be,
Lounging in a hammock,
‘Neath a tall Kew apple tree.
It boasts a mighty river,
Flowing fast and free,
And stately ships ply to and fro,
From mountains to the sea.
Tower’d castles line both shores,
Built there by Sioux and Cree,
With profits from the fur trade,
Where they live like royalty.
Dark-eyed maidens clad in buckskin,
And beaded finery,
Flit gracefully from tree to tree,
And smile invitingly.
I would rise and gird myself,
And fly there like a whiz,
Straight to that valley paradise,
But I don’t know where it is.
Go Down to Kew in Apple Time
Go Down to Kew in apple time, in apple time, in apple time,
Go down to Kew in apple time. It must be out there somewhere.
The valley has a lovely view of apple trees, but few of yew,
And few of you have been to Kew when blossom time is due there.
The blossoms are a true blue hue even when the dew is new,
And morning tea has yet to brew. Will Orange pekoe do for you?
Apples here are all too few, often old and never new. I never new
That apples grew down there in Kew. Kew apples are a joy to chew,
And are so jolly good for you, if you boil or bake or barbecue.
Go down to Kew in apple time, in apple time, in apple time,
Go down to Kew in apple time. I hope that you can find it.