To An Old Buffalo Skull

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When our Maker made this country,
He did a dang fine job,
Filled ‘er up with trees and water,
Planted grass on all the sod

Says he, “Now for some buffalo,
And redskins too, by jinks”
Also some deer and antelope,
With elk throwed in, me thinks

That way the country lay in peace
For many, many years,
But the Maker hankered for some work,
So he thought of more ideas

Then besides the reds came white men,
And either colour that could ride,
Went to shooting off you buffalo,
And only, for your hides

Next came the red coat Mountie,
Then the cattlemen and cattle,
The poor damned Indians fought then,
But like yours, a losing battle

The Indians whipped, you buffalo gone,
The cow-man ruled supreme,
This was real God’s country,
Had the grass, the lakes, the streams.

Then some galoot yells, “This soil’s rich,
Let’s introduce the plow,”
So the farmers swarmed and crowded out,
The cowboy and the cow

The farmer now is striving hard
To grow his spuds and grains,
But why, old pal, did they ever try,
To farm where it seldom rains?

It sure hurts, when I stop to think,
Of all that wild grass range,
Especially when a dust storm’s on,
What a dreadful, shocking change

I think that if the frontierman,
That toiled in your days,
Could see the mess their range is in,
They’d rise from out their graves

So, as I’ve found you, old buffalo skull,
While riding by your way,
I can only say, old-timer,
You’re a relic of a better day.

This poem was composed by P. J. (Pete) Perrin, May 26, 1938.
Pete was cowboying on the Matador community pasture at the time he wrote this.

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