Out on the range long about now,
A cowpoke on his saddle horse is wiping his brow.
Others are tending the cattle and doing their best,
Attempting to find a favorable place in which to rest.
A bold ride and a long drive taken at last,
They've reached a river by riding hard and fast.
Long about evening the cowpokes will ride in,
Some tuckered out, others with a smirky grin.
They gather near the chuck wagon and can hardly wait,
Especially if the cook's cuisine is a little late.
The chuck wagon is the most welcomed part of the drive,
And the cook is considered the most important person alive.
The cuisine often included preserved beans and salted meat,
After a grueling day, the cowpokes were hungry and ready to eat.
Some would bow their heads and quietly say grace,
While others were thankful for camping in a secure place.
The cowpokes were appreciative of the trail cooks of old,
Even if they had a reputation of being difficult, but bold.
They would rise early, and didn't retire until after dark,
' Chuck away, and come and get it, ' became their popular mark.
The cowpokes would sit near the fire and sing their favorite song,
While the stars shined steady and bright during the night so long.
The silence intermittently broken by the coyotes whining,
While the cowpokes struggled with their yawning and sighing.
Cowpokes will never disappear - re-enactors relive the glory days,
And want to preserve and honor the ranch heritage ways.
The everyday life and exploits of the cowpokes will forever remain,
As they tended and herded cattle across the western plain.