Cowboy Poetry Contest

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Congratulations to the Winners of the 3rd Annual Cowboy Poetry Contest

May 2018
Open to ages 18 and under

  Sponsored by the Santa Maria Public Library Foundation



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Grades K-3

1st Place –Josie R., third grade

On the Plain

A Cowboy’s Boots


To most people these boots

look like a scrap of torn up leather,

but they tell a story of a cowboy’s life.


They tell how he works, rides, and plays,

no matter how hard and long the days.


He wears no shoes but these boots.

They are on from dawn until dusk.

They have scratches, holes and are as torn

up as can be.


Even though they are torn up

I wish they belonged to me.



2nd Place – Paisley M., third grade

Cowboy Legend


I know a cowboy who’s strong and tough.

He has hard working hands that are rough.


They show all the years of blood sweat’n’tears.

He is up before the sun rises.


He’s still up when the sun sets.

At the end of the day he holds a nice cold beer.


I know he would be there for me

through thick and thin.


A true cowboy; he is a win.

This cowboy legend I speak of

I am proud to call my Papa Steve.


3rd Place – Elizabeth V., third grade

Little Horse


Small and sweet, little horse,

Run through the desert all day.


Listen, listen, little horse,

Close to your mother you should stay.


Let’s walk, little horse,

Past cactus and across the sand.


Hurry, hurry, little horse,

It’s too hot on this dry land!


Snug and warm, little horse,

Be close to your mother tonight.


Sleepy, sleepy, little horse,

I’ll turn off the light!

Grades 4-6


1st Place, Viviana M., fourth grade

 The Lone Star State

Cowboys and Cowgirls roaming the west,

got on chaps and have a fringe vest.

Riding past the Rocky Mountains in the wild

and the wind is not to mild.


Horses are ready to pull wagons as they walk

Cowboys and Cowgirls get on and talk.

Their going to the Lone star state

where people win rodeos and celebrate


Now It’s starting to rain at sunset,

but Cowboys and Cowgirls don’t care if they get wet.

Finally they reach the Lone star sate

They play music, dance, and celebrate.


2nd Place, Charles R., sixth grade

 The Branding


One day a year, all the good cowboys meet at my ranch.


We hit the saddle at sunup and head to the back country to gather the cows.


Yup, it’s branding time, it’s time to vaccinate and mark the calves.


We get them to the corral, the irons are hot, it’s time to show ownership of all the calves that I got!


You’ll see some fancy ropin’, the jobs getting’ done, when the cattle are all worked, we’ll go have some fun.


3rd Place, Fatima N., fourth grade

Western Night


Work is done,

sunset has come,

the horsemen go home to get the finest cloths,

the young cowgirl bright as sun,


As the young cowboy looking sharp as night,

Cowboy comes in with his shirt, jeans and vest,

As the cowgirl comes in with her hat, boots, and dress

As they dance and dance a little girl looks from her house fence in a mad mood,


A little boy looking the same way ran in the house and ran up the staris,

The little boy and the little girl put on beautiful and handsome cloths

The little girl with her finest dress and bow,

And the boy with his finest shirt, and jeans,


They both ran to their horses,

And got the saddles that were next to the cattles,

They rode to the barn where the women got yarn for a sewing contest,

They got off and started dancing with the grown ups who were prancing,


At the end they went to the firepit,

Where they cooked s’mores and sang songs,

Some people are cleaning some people are sweeping and kids are asleep,

That is what happens on western nights


Grades 7-8


1st place, Sutton C.


You Ain't No Cowboy

You Ain’t No Cowboy,

If you don’t tally on calves.

Jump on your pony,

An’ prove that yer a cowboy.

Daylights a burnin Olson!


2nd place, Briyit Burgara, eighth grade


In this small place

There is so much to do.

Every morning so many people get up to work.

Waking up to work on green fields.

Once the sun goes down, the moon

Comes up with bright yellow stars.

Outside dark with only light coming from

The full moon, but once the sun comes

Up again, workers wake up to do the same

Thing again. This small place has

So many things to do like

Ranching the cattle, biking around

The dirt, and growing beautiful crops.

This amazing little place is called




3rd place, Elexa H., seventh grade


Cuyama Fire

The fire behind Cuyama,

Surrounded my horses.

It did not come to make friends,

It came for destruction.

Grades 9-12


1st place, Madelyn B., twelfth grade


The Cowboys


The old man sat in the corner of the bar

Knowing damn good and well

He had past his drinking

Limit by way too far.


Watching young men yipping and tripping

n bragging about all their fortunes.

Patting each other on the backs n

With real hard smacks.


One drink turns to two

And two drinks turns to ten.

Soon they start running about

like little headless hens.


Tipping their hats back with lots of joy,

and stomping their boots like real cowboys.

Waving their guns high and proud

They get kicked out for being too loud.


Hearing them cheer and brag

bout all their cows and pigs and American flags.

It made him sad the old man, it did,

Seeing the future of true cowboys disappear.


The real men of the wild Wild West,

The ones that didn’t need bulletproof fests.

Ridin towards the horizon on their trusty steeds

ridin through the dusty weeds.


The real cowboys stand tall with no fear,

The ones that can smell when the enemy is near.


2nd place, Brooke S., eleventh grade

 Lightning Bolt


The horse that I ride

Is an extension of my soul.

The muscles underneath his hide

Ripple like fire and coal


He enjoys the ride as much as I

And you can feel it in his bones

Even when we step in a cow pie

His neigh never changes it’s tones


In the stables I care for him

Grooming and feeding him well

I will protect him limb for limb

And he follows the call of my bell


Out in the fields, free from his rider

He gallops and roams but always returns

To the hands of his master and the scent of cider

That wafts through the land and all its turns


As a boy I gazed at my fathers horses

Wishing upon stars for my own

I watched them train on the courses

And all their beauty was shown


I started riding horses when I was a young chap

But I got my first horse when I was 14

Riding around on the first lap

And I Knew he could never be mean


I named him Lightning Bolt

It’s been 27 years

Long ago he was the strongest colt

But now I look back and it only brings tears


3rd place. Payton A., twelfth grade



I’ve loved riding horses for most of my life.

Whether Clydesdale or thoroughbred,

I’d ride all horses without strife,

But Roxanne was not one of them.

Now Roxanne was a beautiful mare,

An Arabian I received at age five,

But then she gave me a dead-eyed stare

That made me wish I wasn’t alive.

I told my ma and pa that she wasn’t the horse for me,

But they just stood by and shook their heads

And said, “Get over it, Joelene.”

So I tried while wishing they had night terrors in their beds.

Roxanne was so stubborn and so cruel

I was surprised she was a horse and not a mule.

She would not weir reins or saddles.

She always shook them to her feet.

Grooming her was always a battle,

And it’s the reason I now have fake front teeth.

But all that was child’s play to actually riding her.

She would not willingly except at the buttcrack of dawn.

She moved faster when I wanted her to go slower.

And she would not stop if I needed to use the john.

The last straw was pulled when she sent my into hysteria.

She threw me into a bush by the lagoon

With Mosquitos carrying malaria.

I left her locked in her stable as I healed, but she escaped in June.

After I returned from looking for her, Ma asked, “Where’s Roxanne?”

I answered, “At the bottom of the Grand Canyon.”


Honorable Mention. Taylor H., eleventh grade

Becoming a Cowboy


When I was just four years old

We packed up our stuff

And we climbed into the wagon

And we moved out west

As we rode away I waved goodbye

To the farm we were leaving behind

And my friends and family who I may never see again

I don’t remember much

But the dust and the empty land

My brother dreamed of being a cowboy

Just like every other young

Boy of my time

He dreamed of riding a wild horse

Working on the land

He wanted the hat, and the lasso

And for people to look at him

And dream of becoming like him

He believed all he had to do was

Buy hat and ride a horse

But he didn’t realize what

It takes to be a real cowboy

He didn’t know what they do everyday

They don’t’ just run around

All day chasing the bad guys

On a horse, or robbing

Stagecoaches and running from the law

They really do work hard

Their horse and herd become their families

The cows become their closest friends

To really be a cowboy

You must become one with the cow