In honour of Cowboy Poetry Week, Sunday, April 19 to Saturday, April 25, we are featuring poems by Doris Daley! Today’s poem is called “100 Years From Now.”
Born and raised in Southern Alberta ranch country, Doris Daley writes cowboy poetry that celebrates the humour, history and way of life of the west. Doris has been an emcee and featured performer at every cowboy festival in Canada as well as several in the United States, including Texas, California, Colorado, Nevada, Utah, Montana and Oregon. In 2004 she was named Best Female Cowboy Poet in North America by the Academy of Western Artists. At the November, 2009 WMA Awards Show, Doris won top honours for Best Female Cowboy Poet and best cowboy poetry CD.
100 Years from Now
100 years from now, if the world’s still in the game, May the earth recall our footprints, may the wind sing out our names.
May someone turn a page and hearken back upon this time, May someone sing a cowboy tune and someone spin a rhyme.
History buffs will study us and time will tell its tales Our lives will be a brittle pile of cold and quaint details.
A scrap of faded photograph, a news headline or two…
But life was so much more, my friend, when the century was new.
100 years from now, don’t look back and think me quaint, Don’t judge and call me sinner, don’t judge and call me saint.
We lived beneath the arch with a mix of grit and grace, Just ordinary folk in an extraordinary place.
So 100 years from now hear our ancient voices call, Know that life was good and the cowboy still rode tall.
Wild flowers filled our valleys and the coyotes were our choir We knew some wild places that had never known the wire.
We raised stouthearted horses; we’d ride and let ‘er rip We burned beneath the summer sun and railed at winter’s grip.
We took a little courage when the crocus bloomed each spring We loved beneath the stars and we heard the night wind sing.
We buried and we married, we danced and laughed and cried And there were times we failed, but let the records show we tried.
And sure, I have regrets; I made more than one mistake If I had it to do over there are trails I wouldn’t take.
But the sun rose up each day; we’d make it through another year We’d watch the skies and count our calves and hoist a cup of cheer.
We knew flood and fire and heartache, we knew fat and we knew bone But we were silver lining people and we never rode alone.
So, Friend, if you are reading this 100 years from now Understand that we were pilgrims who just made it through somehow.
We’ve crossed the river home and we left but one request:
100 years from now, think back kindly on the west.
And ordinary folk, no special fate, no special claims But 100 years from now, may the wind sing out our names.
Know the times were good and we rode the best we know.
We loved the west; we kept the faith, 100 years ago.