Christian Cowboy Poetry and more

Christian Cowboy Poetry and more
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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

They'll Do It Anyway

Everywhere we look these days, we see our world spinning out of control. You watch the news, I don't need to tell you. I wrote this back in my "confrontational poetry" era in the 90s. Even then, the mainline denominations were letting values erode under the pressure of the, "if it feels good, do it" and "what's right for me is right" organizations. The original version of this was a lot harsher and more specific but I toned it down a little because...well, because I can make the point without turning up the heat so the pot boils over. You know there are people out there who use violence to make their point.

They'll do it anyway...

There are condoms in the classroom.
Precaution’s preached in school.
But, no one’s talking abstinence
cause that’s against the rules.
You have to realize, we’re told
new rules apply today.
We must provide protection,
cause “They’ll do it anyway”.

Soap Opera’s feature soft-core porn.
And if you lust for more,
you can buy the really raunchy stuff
in a local video store.
Talk shows thrive on deviates
who preach a Godless nation.
The more perverse their lifestyle is
the more our fascination.
You have the right to watch, we’re told.
Free speech is law today.
And even if we all object
“They’ll do it anyway”.

Every special interest group
spews forth their brand of hate.
And Christians bite their tongues
because we can’t discriminate.
It’s time WE called a sin, a sin
not look the other way.
It doesn’t make it right because
“they’ll do it anyway”.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 2010

Monday, August 30, 2010

The Full Moon

When I wrote my latest book mixing message with poetry, I was going to title it, "I just want to moon the world." I had a great picture in mind for the cover. Cooler heads prevailed and I called it, "Ridin' for the Boss and the Brand." Those cooler heads thought more people would be interested in buying a book with a positive title than one that sounded angry. I agree and thank them for their willingness to tell me when I've gone too far. (BLATANT PLUG: by the way, I still have a few copies left if you'd like to add to your library or buy a unique Christmas gift for your pastor or suggest it as a group study resource.) Right now, here is your chance to read the poem that inspired the first title:

He came in from the line shack
where he’d spent some time alone
without a television, a newspaper or a phone.
We told him what was hap’nin’
and I thought I saw a tear
as he said “I want to moon the world
and I think I’ll start right here.”
Then, as his hands moved belt-ward,
the buckle to release,
he said, “A moon’s the only thing
that’ll give this world some peace.”
His thumbs wrapped round the leather,
as he looked us in the eye
and said “I want to moon the world
and I’m gonna tell you why.

They’re fencing off the grassland;
they’re poisoning the streams
Free speech and self reliance
will soon be just a dream.
Bart Simpson is a hero.
Our kids can't pray in school.
‘Don't get mad, get even’
has become our Golden Rule.
The people we put faith in
have sold us down the river
So we plead with politicians
in hopes they can deliver
all the people in the country
from graft and corporate greed.
But in the end, I’ll tell you friend,
a moon is what they need.”

He said, “I did some thinkin’,
up yonder in the woods
and I bet if we all mooned the world,
it’d do the place some good.
Just ponder, partner, on the moon
and where it gets its light.
See, it’s reflected from the sun
so we won’t curse the night.”
Then he opened up a Bible
and a smile shown in his eyes
as he told us with excitement
that he just could not disguise,
“You know, if we reflect God’s Son
to a sin dark human race,
then when we “moon” the whole wide world,
it’ll be a better place.”

Jeff Hildebrandt copyright 2009

Friday, August 27, 2010

When you're wrong...

He stood there in the forest
surrounded by the trees
alone with just his future plans
and all his memories.
He stood there in the forest;
not lost, but all alone.
He picked this place on purpose.
No calls came on his phone,
nobody interrupted,
nobody criticized,
nobody told him what to do.
But then he realized
there is one truth he can’t ignore.
He’d learned it from his mom.
Even if no woman hears it,
what he says is prob’ly wrong.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 8/23/2010

I know, I know, you've heard the joke. This was just a poetic exercise to contextualize it. I hear a voice in the back of my head saying I should have kept it to myself...the voice sounds...female. The voice is not disagreeing, it just says I was wrong to post it.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


I let you fry my bacon.
I let you bake my beans.
I let you cook my cornbread,
and wash my old blue jeans
in that brand new Kenmore washer
you got in ’93
as a sign of my affection
on our anniversary.

Waddayamean you want to leave?
I let you groom my pony.
Now, suddenly you’re all upset
and wantin’ alimony.
I let you drive the pick up
when you get the feed and such.
And I kept clear out of your way
when you replaced the clutch.

So, whaddayamean you don’t feel loved
and you’re just a hired hand?
Didn’t you say for better or worse
when the ring went on your hand?
And darlin’ you’ve had better than most.
I don’t know what you’re thinkin’.
Aren’t I here to remind you
of things to be done
and don’t I come home after drinkin’?

Whaddayamean we never talk?
You hardly say a peep.
Last night I tried to talk to you
and you just fell asleep.
It looks as though your mind’s made up
though I don’t know why you’re peeved.
But there’s one thing I’d like to ask
Can you clean out the barn ‘fore you leave?

Jeff Hildebrandt © 1999

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


I have myself a Facebook page
and I don’t know ‘bout you
but I just sort-a make stuff up
cause if it all was true
you’d know my life is boring.
So I write that I’m a fan
of vegetarian Bar-B- Q
and getting spray on tans.
I say I play the sitar blues
in my pick-up truck from Dodge
enroute to study Tai-Kwan-Do
and advanced equine massage.
I am “friends” with lots of people,
some I’ve even met.
I support all kinds of causes.
What they are, well, I forget.
I follow several web based blogs
and write one of my own.
I tweet my twitter updates
on my brand new high-tech phone.

I-M means Instant Messaging
at rates I can’t afford.
While building up my self esteem,
“I AM” just gets ignored.
In this semi-social universe
it seems the main attraction
is expanding on a network
while avoiding interaction.
So, instead of texting others
about some TV show
I should use this new technology
to ask the folks I know
to meet me and to volunteer
to help someone in need
or come with me to worship.
That way I plant a seed
of social interaction
the way our God implored
and expand upon the network
that brings glory to The Lord.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 082310

Monday, August 23, 2010

It Just Isn't Fair

This is one I need to read over and over. Last Friday, I got some discouraging news. That very day, in the "Daily Hope with Rick Warren" the subject was Sometimes God Says Not Yet. "You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, "He who is coming will come and will not delay." Hebrews 10:36-37. The next day the topic was How to Overcome Discouragement: "Then the people of Judah said, "The work crews are worn out, and there is too much rubble. We can't continue to rebuild the wall." Nehemiah 4:10. Meanwhile, in another email from an on line Bible Study called, The High Calling, I read a Daily Reflection by Mark Roberts that discussed tossing your burden on the Lord. "Give your burdens to the LORD,and he will take care of you.
He will not permit the godly to slip and fall." Psalm 55:22. Today, I found this poem that I wrote several years ago. I think God is trying to get thru to me.

It’s Just Not Fair

You work and you work,
but all you can gain
is higher blood pressure
and splitting migraines.
You can’t get ahead,
in fact, you lose ground;
Inflation and taxes
are wearing you down.
When heartache and pain
are all you can see
do you cry out,
“Good God, why do this to me?”
You’re crippled,
alone; you live in a chair.
Do you scream and lash out
‘cause life isn’t fair?
Your skin isn’t white,
no job and no hope.
Will blaming the system
help you to cope?
The sewer’s your home,
when it overflows
do you sit and complain
about all of your woes?
Or, do you tread water,
give praise, not a curse
and thank God, the Father
that it isn’t worse.
You’ll just waste your life
and won’t stand a chance
if you don’t see the “why”
of your circumstance.
Christians need teaching
and training that’s tough
cause, we’re facing a foe
who really plays rough.
Remember poor Paul
from Philippians One.
His chains helped him witness
and more souls were won.
He used his ordeal,
not let it use him.
And when he faced trials,
his faith didn’t dim.
Philippians Four,
recite with one voice
Rejoice in God always,
in all things rejoice.

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Crossing

While visiting a friend, I saw a painting in his study. A trail herd heading North thru the Cimarron River. Now, picture yourself, looking down on this painting as if you're horseback on a rise just beyond the river crossing.

The Crossing

Cresting the rise, a glare in his eyes.
Squinting as sharp shards of sun
reflect off the river.
His gloved hand instinctively shadows his face.

Dust in the wind, talcum powder thin
coating, caressing, coloring
grass, leaves, cowboys and cattle
all shades of sepia and cocoa brown.

The river is low, the current slow.
A turtle shell mound of mud, mid-stream,
rutted by thousands of hooves.
Punchers pause, stirrup deep,
the Cimarron soaking up through their souls.

Memories flood without warning
just like this river,
Swollen and swift, it sends cattle
crashing, thrashing, slashing.
The kid, that’s all anyone knew him as,
just “The Kid”,
hung up under his longhorn-punctured pony,
was buried amidst those sycamores.
He never did see the Kansas plains.

Shifting in his saddle,
blinking away the vision,
the rider’s breath catches in his chest.
A daydream?
Or shadows of the past, lingering,
where once
they crossed the Cimarron on the Chisholm Trail?

Mopping the dust from his forehead,
he rides on,
leaving the past to itself.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 2005

Thursday, August 19, 2010


Inspired by a picture of cowboys herding mustangs to the home corral combined with my imagination of what lies just over that far hill.

As our expansive vistas bump against
encroaching boundaries,
cloud shadows slide along the short grass;
omens of darker days just over the horizon.

But here, just here
there is a sense of solitude and stillness.
Free range fillies, heads bowed,
haltingly make their way
toward the setting sun.
Each hoof beat muffled by dust
that erupts then hangs suspended
between sunlight and shadow.
The last vestige of their passing.

The not so distant highway hum
and the whosh, whosh of a traffic copter
drown the sound of mustangs and mule deer.
IPods play Waylon, Willie and Western Swing
as cowboy’s pray to keep their home on the range
from becoming a two story subdivision
with pools and putting greens.
So they ride, backs straight, heads high,
pushing the past lest it be overtaken by the present.
Jeff Hildebrandt © 2010

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Sponge

There are some of us out there who get so busy being religious that we lose track of why. You may know someone like that; all take and no give. To be fair, I know some folks who have an immense capacity for study, but they also seem to be able to find the time to put their faith into action. I'm a little intimidated by believers who do all the things that I wish I was doing. This little poem is about those who fall instead, into the category of "wanna-be buckaroos" All Hat and No Cattle. “But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.” James 1:22

The Sponge

The next time you pick up that sponge at your sink,
just stop for a minute and take time to think
how that sponge represents what life is about.
It's not useful at all, until it's wrung out.

On Sunday, you sit and smile in your pews
and listen intently to all the Good News.
You have pamphlets by Stanley, tapes by Swindoll
and you hear John MacArthur on route to the mall
where you rush past a hand out and don’t stop to look
cause you’re in a hurry to get a new book
that talks about living as Christ would today
or how to serve others and how best to pray.

We soak up the teaching in hopes we’ll be blessed
but despite all that study we’re feeling depressed.
We know the right words but they never get said.
We don’t implement anything that we’ve read.
We're just like that sponge that sits on our sink.
If we don't get wrung out, we're going to stink.
Just soaking up knowledge is not what God planned.
We must live the lessons and help those we can.
So, squeeze out the blessings God sends from above.
Wring out the Good News of God’s saving love.
There's joy like a fountain from which we can drink.
But not if our sponge is filled up on the sink.

Jeff Hildebrandt copyright 1999

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Baby Boomer Blues

I’m a pre-modern man in a post-modern age;
A poet, a seer, a sayer, and sage
who rhymes of how simple our lives used to be
when Howdy Doody was on TV.
I was here for the birth of rock and roll
and saw the beginning of blue eyed soul,
High school sock hops when coke was a drink
and Saturday nights at the roller rink.
And I speak Baby Boomer.
I used to watch Jack Paar..
I wore green for Uncle Sam
and drove a rag top car.
Yeah, I speak Baby Boomer.
My hair has gone to gray
and no one really cares to hear
the things I have to say
I was here for Buddy Holly and the day the music died.
And when they shot Old Yeller, everybody cried.
Tie dye shirts, mini-skirts, Peter, Paul and Mary;
The Beatles and Bob Dylan, Curly, Moe and Larry.
I was here for Sputnik and the U. S. on the moon,
those Alabama marchers and lives snuffed out too soon
in Dallas and in Memphis. Our country mourned its loss
while young men went to Vietnam to carry freedom’s cross.
Yes, I speak Baby Boomer.
Things are groovy and they’re cool.
I’m the Woodstock generation
and still “hip” as a rule.
But, I speak Baby Boomer.
My hair has gone to gray.
and my kids don’t pay attention
to the things I have to say.
Oh, we have things in common. We like pizza with a beer
and we try to get together for Christmas every year.
But my children now have children and I think that it was better
when generations had a name not just a single letter.
See, I speak Baby Boomer
not X or Y or Z
So, let me lay it on you
and hopefully you’ll see
that all us Baby Boomers
have plenty still to say.
It’s just harder to remember what
since our hair has turned to gray.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 2007

Monday, August 16, 2010


This poem came to me while I was in the mountains at a men's retreat. Like all good church-based men's retreats, we had several hours of "fun" time on a Saturday afternoon. Most of the guys played golf or went hiking, but I'm more of an Ice Tea by the pool kind of guy, so I just relaxed. But I kept thinking about something said in the morning session and as I sat by the pool, I wrote...then re-wrote...until it was time to gather again. for the uninitiated, Bob Nolan was one of the founders of the "Sons of the Pioneers," along with Roy Rogers. One of their most famous songs was, "Tumbling Tumbleweeds."


Bob Nolan sang of tumbleweeds
just driftin’ cross the plains.
And even now, when cowboys sing
you’ll hear that same refrain.
I think about those tumbleweeds
just tumblin’ to and fro,
always changing their direction
with how the wind will blow.
The tumbleweed just tumbles
because it’s broken free.
It has no roots to hold it back,
its dead as dead can be.
And in the song, that cowboy
was driftin’ that way too.
He had no firm foundation
that he could hold on to.
At times I think that I’m just like
that tumblin’ tumbleweed.
just blown in all directions
by self-centeredness and greed.
When I don’t have Living Water
or feed on God’s own Word
I become a drftin’ tumbleweed.
Of that, I am assured.
But there is hope for tumbleweeds.
Don’t take this truth for granted.
God’s the gardener of your soul
and you can be replanted.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 2004

Friday, August 13, 2010

Gone Fishing

Henry David Thoreau is quoted as saying, “Most men go fishing all their lives without knowing it is not fish they are after.” I wonder how many people go to church on Sunday and don't know what they're after? When you leave a worship service are you looking for ways to serve others or just looking for someone to serve you lunch?

Gone Fishin’

A friend told me he’s been a-wishin’
he could spend more time just fishin’.
Catchin’ rainbows in a stream
seems to be his only dream.
But when he tries to get away
some crisis just gets in the way
and he’s left sittin’ here and wishin’
he could be out there just fishin’.

One Friday, he was set to leave
when someone’s tuggin’ at his sleeve
saying he feels just ignored.
So they talked about the Lord.
They talked about what God has done;
sending down His only Son
to die so all of us could live.
But that’s not all God had to give.
His Spirit’s here to help each day
and all we need to do is pray.
Then, Saturday, he still had time
to get out there and wet a line.
When someone called to say he’s bored.
So they talked about the Lord
and just how full a life can be
when given to the Trinity.
God’s opened heaven’s doors for you
but while you’re here, there’s lots to do.
His Spirit’s here to help each day
and all you have to do is pray.
In church on Sunday, he was wishin’
he was out there somewhere fishin’.
Then this vision crossed his eyes
as God said, “Don’t you realize
the fishin’ trip that you’ve been on?
It’s like Andrew, Peter, James and John.
That’s the fishing you should seek.
And you caught two big ones just this week”.

And so if lately, you’ve been wishin’
you were out there somewhere fishin’,
take time with those who come your way
or a big one just might get away.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 2008

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Great American Wild West Show

The Great American Wild West Show is getting ready for their next extravaganza. It will be in Reno, Nevada at the state fair. I have known these folks for quite a few years and love to see their show. It combines great Western music, stagecoaches, trick riders, Native dancers, long horn cattle drives and fun for the whole family. I adapted one of my poems to fit their presentation and they have been kind enough to let me perform it when I can make it out to one of their events. I only wish I could be with them in Reno.

He’s a Cowboy,
with a hundred years of history
that’s no where near the mystery
and romance on the range the movies show.
He’s like those who rode the Goodnight Trail
pushin’ cows from Texas to the rail
when a Cowboy’s Code was all you had to know.

Vaquero blood pumps through his veins
and he is all that now remains
of a breed-a men whose handshake sealed a deal.
And the Great American Wild West Show
may be your only chance to know
they weren’t no Urban Cowboys, they were real.

From the golden days of Buffalo Bill
these legends live and always will
in the minds of everyone who comes to see
the sights and sounds and stories told
of Indians and riders bold
cause, the way it is, is how it used to be.

Jeff Hildebrandt Copyright 2000

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cowboys on Concrete

You may or may not know that I was a volunteer fireman and emergency medical technician for 7 years back in Kentucky. When you read this poem, you'll know that I know the feelings I mention. I just did a radio interview for Trent Loos' Rural Routes program heard all over the mid-west and he wanted me to read this so I thought I'd post it here as well. On Sep;tember 11th, I've been asked to perform this and Cowboy Up America at a tribute to "First Responders" in Illinois.

Cowboys on Concrete

There are TV shows and movies
about the cowboy way.
And I’ve heard people question
if it’s relevant today.
Does the cowboy code of ethics
really still apply?
Do cowboys help the needy
or like others, pass them by?
Do they stand up for the helpless
and when asked, they volunteer?
Are they brave? Is there compassion?
Do they act despite the fear?
Have you seen a cowboy lately?
Have you really looked around
to see who rides to help you out
when all the chips are down?
Do you recognize the cowboy?
Not the swagger or the hat
but the cowboy way of helping out
when we’re in need of that.
They’re the ones who face down danger
when others run away;
the ones whose life is on the line
protecting us each day.

But, do you know the courage
that it takes to heed the call
and run into a burning building
that could kill them all?
Or the fear they have to swallow
as they make a traffic stop
cause the world is full of crazies
who’d just love to kill a cop.
Have you ever felt as though a target’s
painted on your chest?
Are you haunted by the nagging thought
you didn’t do your best?
Are there memories you just can’t shake
of choices that you had to make
and chances that you had to take
to risk for someone else’s sake?
Do you know the code of silence
they maintain when they go home?
To protect their loved ones from the truth,
they carry it alone.
One wife described it like a dance;
they circle round the fears
and hold each other tightly
to keep away the tears.
And yet, each time the call goes out
that someone is in danger
these heroes saddle up and ride
like modern day Lone Rangers.
Cause there’s another feeling
that they all get to share:
That right now, someone is alive,
a child in danger did survive,
a family won’t be wracked with grief,
the city’s safe from one more thief.
Inside, they all share this belief;
The world is better ‘cause they’re there.

They’re cowboys on the concrete.
When you see one, pray God’s grace
will surround and will protect them
from dangers that they face.
Then thank those first responders.
They do what must be done
and they deserve our gratitude.
So we salute you, everyone.

Jeff Hildebrandt copyright 7/30/2010

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

One More Ride

This poem was like one of those unpredictable bulls I see when I watch the PBR. They start in one direction and all of a sudden make a quick lunge, a belly roll and you're looking at the sky. I had the first line in the back of my mind for over a year. I kept looking at it, trying to shoe-horn it into one direction. Then, all of a sudden, another image came charging out of the gate. Several years ago, I used part of this poem to promote a marathon of rodeo-related movies on Encore Westerns. Later, I added the Post Script. Hope you enjoy it.

One More Ride
He can throw a rope in a figure eight
but he just can’t seem to stand up straight.
What isn’t broke, is bruised or hurt
from spendin’ time down in the dirt
while Brahma’s do their victory dance
all up his spine and down his pants.
But he tapes his broken bones real tight
so he can ride tomorrow tonight
cause you know way down deep inside,
all he wants is one more ride.

He’s a rodeoin’ cowboy.
He’s an old bull ridin’ fool.
And it’s taught him lots of lessons
that he never learned in school.
Like bein’ tough and bein’ true.
Get up when you’re knocked down.
And the inner strength to cowboy up
when no one is around.

Each weekend he is on the go
hittin’ every rodeo.
He hides his pain with jokes and smiles
and after several hundred miles
he parks his truck and pays his fee
and wonders who his draw will be.
He drinks draft beer and cheap mescal
and shoots the bull with all his pals.
And each one, way down deep inside
is hopin’ they get one more ride.
In the morning he drinks coffee black,
pulls out his gear and checks his tack.
Ace bandages wrap round his joints
and with some Bengay he anoints
each aching bone and muscle strain
as he prepares for yet more pain.

Cause, he’s a rodeoin’ cowboy.
He’s an old bull ridin’ fool.
Some say he ornery as a goat
and stubborn as a mule.
But he’s a rodeoin’ cowboy
and way down deep inside
he thinks and dreams of nothing else
but winning one more ride.

At home, his darlin’ minds the place.
There’s chores to do and kids to chase.
She works real hard the fear to hide
when she knows it’s time for his next ride.
That evenin’, staring at the phone
she wonders if he’s comin’ home.
Tears well up cause she worries so
but she would never let him know.
As a cowboy’s wife you learn to hide
the fear that comes with one more ride.

Cause he’s a rodeoin’ cowboy
born for broncs and bulls and blood
and she knows he won’t be happy
lest he’s playin' in the mud.
Yeah, he’s a rodeoin' cowboy
and she’s there by his side
and will be when the strings run out
and he’s had his one last ride.

Jeff Hildebrandt copyright 2005

(Post Script)
On Sunday’s he’s in Cowboy Church
cause that’s the cowboy way.
He knows that Jesus gives him strength
to face each unknown day.
He knows what ever happens
the Lord is by his side
so he saddles up with confidence
when it’s time for his next ride.

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Quest

A friend, Marta Lane, posted this reminder on her blog (Follow My Albert Einstein said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results. He was a very wise man who makes very tasty bagels....What? Oh, sorry, not the same Einstein. Well, Marta's blog is about the dream she and her husband, Dan, had to simplify their lives and move to Hawaii. She is a great writer and I really enjoy her stories. This poem is about being active, not passive, when it comes to things that must be done.

The Quest
I can see a horse at sunset
with a cowboy riding west.
See him wave to those he’s leaving
as he takes off on his quest
to find what he’s been missing;
to cure what gnaws inside
that’s kept him so dern restless
and so unsatisfied.
He’s tired of Technicolor
and just wants black and white
where truth cannot be shaded;
things are either wrong or right.
I imagine I’m that cowboy;
that I have the guts to go
and live outside my comfort zone
in a way that truly shows
that I believe God loves me.
And if I let Him lead,
my needs will all be satisfied
and I’ll be blessed indeed.
I’m tired of straddling fences.
It’s time I took a stand
and lived life telling others
of the glory that God’s planned.
I’m tired of worldly worship
that panders to the lost.
The Bible says God’s drawn a line
that none of us should cross.
There is glory when “The Son” shines
as we’re riding for God’s brand
with love and understanding
and a pair of helping hands.
Eternal life for everyone
should be our quest, of course.
So, remember why you’re riding;
God can’t lead a stabled horse.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 2008

Friday, August 6, 2010


I believe that giving to the church is an essential part of worship. Among other things, it is your way of show your creator that you have faith in the promise to always be with you. Now, you can take this Bible passage as encouraging you to give just a little or realize she gave all she had because she trusted God to take care of her.

"Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a fraction of a penny. Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, "I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on." Mark 12: 41-44


Old Ben Dollar and Pete Purdue
were sitting in a middle pew
and it appeared that Ben was nervous
all throughout the entire service.
When it’s over, Pete said “What’s up pard”?
And Ben said, “I was thinkin’ hard”.
Pete stood there, said “go ahead”
Ben sucked in air and then he said,
Sunday sermons 'bout this and that...
sing some songs and pass the hat...
pray a prayer, say Amen,
come back next week and do it again.
We're Satisfied !
But, while the preacher's sermonizing,
I find that I am fantasizing
about how great it would be,
if I could win the lottery.
And while they pray about somethin' or other,
healin’ the sick or helping a brother,
I’m tellin’ God, the good I'd do
if He'd just make my wish come true.
He'd be Satisfied !
Why, I'd take that million and right away,
I'd give ten per cent away.
Course, He understands that the fact is,
the ten per cent comes after taxes...
Gotta keep the government Satisfied!
And about the other ninety per cent?
Well, to make sure how my gift is spent
I'd quit my job and roam around
to find out where the poor are found.
And just so I'll be free to roam,
I'll buy a little motor home,
a 4 -wheel drive and fishing boat
(to get to where it's real remote).
And that is why I hesitate
when they pass the offering plate.
If I could win, I'd do much more
than give this dollar to the poor.
Since I know God wants me to win,
I'll save this buck and try again.
Cause, after all, it's understood,
a winner can do so much good.
Everyone’s Satisfied.
“Not everyone”, said Pete to Ben.
“You need to think this thru again.
Your motivation has the feel of
come on God, let’s make a deal.
No matter how we rationalize,
God knows our hearts. So realize
God’s made it clear what we’re to do.
Mark 12 is meant for me and you
to learn from Jesus that what counts
is faithfulness, not large amounts.
That way, God’s Satisfied.

Jeff Hildebrandt © 2009

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Full Waddie

This is just for fun. Something light to help you get thru the week. Remember the movie, The Full Monty? Sure you do. Remember the song at the end that they danced to, "Leave your hat on"? Tom Jones version? Sure you do. Well, I toyed with that for a while and this is what I came up with. Oh, before you read it, you can put your hat on.....


That Cowboy took off his coat,
and he set down his tote.
Then he took off his spurs,
set his boots next to hers.
She said “Now, take off your vest,
while I take off my dress
but, baby, leave your hat on”.

Then she told him perhaps,
he should remove those chaps.
Next to go is the shirt,
its just covered with dirt
and those jeans have to go,
“Take your time dear, go slow.”
She’s got him down to his briefs.
She said, “Wow, that’s a relief.
Darlin’ what I propose
is that you go wash those clothes.
But you can leave your hat on.”

Jeff Hildebrandt copyright 2005

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Born to this Land

I remember flying to LA listening to one of those music entertainment programs. This one was with a song writer talking about co-writing the Garth Brooks' hit, The River. As I recall, she mentioned that the meter and phrasing was borrowed from something she had heard. She just changed the lyrics. Well, I figured, if you're going to "borrow" you should borrow from the best, so I did. I took their poetic structure and added my own images. Not long ago, posted a painting titled, "Born to this Land" and invited writers to come up with poems about it. This poem seemed to fit.


You know a cowboy is a dreamer
as he rides the shrinking range.
And he dreams of independence
he may never see again.
Trying to learn from what has happened
to avoid what lies ahead
as he works to keep the home place
and make sure his family’s fed.
And he will ride his pony
through the pastures and the streams
cause he says it makes a difference
and it keeps alive his dreams.
He sees God on the hillsides,
in the colors of the leaves
and it makes him truly thankful
for the blessings he’s received.
Too many folks have been defeated;
let their ranch land slip away
‘til the future they imagined
is cut down like the hay.
But he will fight against temptation
and with God on his side
he’ll sit tight in his saddle
and just enjoy the ride.
Cause he was born to cowboy,
He was born onto this land.
He’s a trustee of its heritage
and it’s here he’ll take his stand.
So, he will ride his pony
through the pastures and the streams
cause he says it makes a difference
and it keeps alive our dreams.

Jeff Hildebrandt copyright 2010

Monday, August 2, 2010

Robert Fuller

Robert Fuller and his wife, Jennifer, join me for a picture at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum Wrangler Awards. I was asked to introduce him at a couple of the Q&A sessions prior to the awards banquet and I came up with the poem below. He was inducted into their Performer's Hall of Fame and I was given an award for a retrospecitve I did on John Wayne for Encore Westerns. If you want to know the truth, I'm only sharing this poem because I have a nice picture with these two wonderul actors.

Robert Fuller

He grew up down, round a Florida Key
and everyone knew him as Buddy Lee.
He headed West; they changed his name
and after Korea, he found real fame.
He had a bit part in Calamity Jane
and starred on Laramie and Wagon Train.
He did guest shots on Rin Tin Tin,
The Monroes and the Virginian,
Big Valley, Hec Ramsey, Bonanza, Kung Fu
Return of the Seven and Maverick, too.

To Cowboy fans, he’s sure no stranger.
He was even on Walker…Texas Ranger.
For trivia buffs, that series was nice
cause he got killed on the same show…twice
And I must admit, he won us all
playing doctor with TV nurse, Dixie McCall.
You know, that’s a role at first he turned down
but a talk with Jack Webb soon brought him around
He was on JAG and on The Love Boat,
Mike Hammer, Matt Houston and Murder She Wrote

He’s a brand new addition to this here Hall of Fame
for Great Western Performers. Robert Fuller’s his name.

Jeff Hildebrandt © April 12, 2008

The L.R.U.

This is one of those poems that just sort of showed up. I knew where I wanted to get but I wasn't sure what the journey would look like. So, I started writing and the path became clearer.
I think that's the case with a lot of what we do. If we wait for all the stars to allign, the lights to all turn green and everybody else to shake their head "yes" we'll never get anything done. Remember, God can't lead a stabled horse, He can't steer a parked car or sail a docked boat. But once we're moving, God can direct our path. We have to step out in Faith.
The L. R. U.

Jim rode up through what looked like snow
but the air weren’t near that cold.
and he thought, “This must be Kansas,
there are no hills to behold.”
Up yonder, there’s a rider
who waived him, come ahead.
And when Jim rode up close enough
the other cowboy said,
“Welcome to the home place,
I’m the foreman; name is Pete.
If you’re looking for some steady work
or just a bite to eat
you’re welcome here. But tell me pard,
what brought you out this far?”
Jim looked around and then asked Pete
to tell him where they are.
“It’s called the LRU,” Pete said.
“I’d love to stay,” said Jim.
“The owner’s always near,” Pete smiled,
“Why don’t you talk to him.”
Then said, “Your tack is mighty worn.
Your clothes are tattered too.
You must-a-had it pretty rough.
I’ll tell you what I’ll do.
I’ll just exchange those filthy rags
for a new outfit to wear
and trade your tack and saddle in.
That is, if you don’t care.”
Jim said, “I sure will pay ya
for the duds and all the tack.”
Pete said, “It’s all been paid for
by the owner sometime back.
But there are things that you can do.
When you see need, lend a hand.
And tell folks that you do it
‘cause you’re riding for our brand.
Remind ‘em that they’re welcome here.
We’re open night and day.
Then point them to the narrow path
that brings them on this way.”

We thought the horse wreck killed old Jim.
He sure looked all done in.
Then both eyes opened and he started
describing where he’d been.
“The prairie’s thick with sweet grass
and you never hear a car.
And anywhere you have to ride’s
not far from where you are.
The cattle all go easy
and everywhere you look
everyone is smiling
and the food is proper cooked.”

One fella said Jim smacked his head
much harder than he thought
then they all wandered back to work.
But some of us did not.
Jim said, “They think I’m crazy
but I’ve seen what’s ahead.
I’m giving up my rowdy rides
for the narrow path instead.
And you too have a choice to make,
don’t live your life by chance.
There’s glory at the LRU;
God’s own “Last Round-Up Ranch.”

Jeff Hildebrandt © 12/1/09