Living with the Cows


Living with the Cows

Living with the cows, the cowboys know,

Although they won’t admit it,

That every creature in the herd

Plots, schemes, observes, takes her chances,

Seeks to gain her secret goals.

“Just meat on the hoof,” the cowboys say,

But they know better.

They know that as they watch

They are watched

By knowing eyes

Cowboys say they have to count the herd,

But that’s a lie.

Cowboys know each cow by name,

Or at least by reputation,

And they smile when Gerty slips around a hill

Quietly heading somewhere

With her calf,

Quietly heading somewhere

Only she remembers.


Burlington, Iowa