Happy Holidays from Benj and Jan Simpson

Crusaders; This poem almost means more today to me than it did some 26 years ago.  My son hasn't been home for Christmas for 3 years as he is in his final year of a 6 year hitch in the Navy..  Anyway thought you-all might enjoy! Happy Holidays!  Stay Safe and Be Kind To Yourselves!!
Benj & Jan Simpson

The junipers whiten with snow softly fallin.  Somewhere down the draw there's and old cow a-bawlin.   Now there ain't nothin ails her--we're plumb sure of that.  For the grass has been good and the stock is all fat.   And yet driftin in on the snow-feathered breeze, the sound brings a feeling of wishful unease to us old hands settin here cozy and warm, Snug-sheltered and safe from this Christmas Eve storm:  A strange lonesome feeling we can't push away.  Remembering its Christmas and wondering when Them two empty saddles will be rode agin.

There's two pair of spurs and two hats on their pegs, and two pair of chaps meant for young cowboy legs A-hanging unused on the bunkhouse wall-- But the boys they belong to ain't hear'in cows bawl.  They're hear'in machine guns, the whine of a shell And all them strange sounds of a war that's plain hell; The sea waves a-slappin the side of a boat The ominous roar of a big bombers throat; The strange alien language of little brown men-- The same sounds all over and over agin, While deep in their hearts what they're long'in to hear Is the wind in the cedars, the bawl of a steer.

Us oldsters, we set here this Christmas Eve night A-thinkin of cowboys that's gone off to fight.  If our thoughts could reach them, here's what we'd say We're doin our best boys, since you went away.  The ranch is still here and the cattle well tented.  Your horses are fed and the fences all mended.  Looks like a white Christmas will show up at dawn.  We hope its the last Christmas you boys will be gone.  There's an ol cow a-bawlin---she claims her calfs-a-missin--- Sure wish you boys were here with us to listen.

By S. Omar Barker---

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