B Pictures

Poem By James Mills

We saw Presidents and prospectors,
prizefights and stampedes.
Desperate lives flickered up there
in gorgeous black and white,
teaching us at One and six a go
not to fool with horse thieves and no-accounts.

America: land of happy endings
sending us spittin' into sagebrush nights
rightin' terr'ble wrongs done to
pore homesteaders jess scrapin' by.

America: bowlegged, straight-talkin', slim-waisted,
tasted on the very air
of those cattle drivin' Summers.

Fair land, where a steer's brand
told clear Truth
scorched on raw hides;
where bad guys danced
on limb-tossed lassos,
and the good rode
white hatted towards sundown,
steppin' high and light
in the very last reel.


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