Christian Cowboy Poetry and more

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Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Fence Mender

While I was at one of Michael Martin Murphey's WestFest gatherings, I wandered thru the mercantile area and was drawn to a painting called, "The Fence Mender." by the end of the day, the poem was completed and I performed it on stage that night, with the painting next to me. Later, I shared it with a writer I respect, Corinne Brown, who helped me smooth some of the rough edges and actually finish the poem. Oh, one more thing. When I read the poem to the merchant who was selling the print, he told he he'd never noticed some of what I talk about. Isn't it amazing how often we miss what's right in front of us? By the way, Murph is having another WestFest soon. You should check it out and go if you can. Who knows what you might discover.
The Fence Mender
Fresh Snow…
except by the horse tracks behind him
and the sagebrush,
like polka dots on a bed sheet,
stretching to the mountains ahead.
He’s alone but far from lonely
as he rides up through the snow
along a sagging fence line
with the valley down below.
Pausing where the wire is down
this old fence mender looks around
to see if he can find a clue
of just what critter busted through.
But fresh snow…
covers any sort of sign
except those horse tracks back behind.
So he picks up the wire
nails it back in its place
under gray skies that cover
this wide open space.
Then the clouds split apart
by shafts from the sun
as if they’re God’s spotlight
on a job that’s well done.
Shadows shorten.
Boot and horse tracks
melt together as one
and tight wire is all that’s left behind.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 2004

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