There’s music, if you listen,
When the wind plays on a wire,
How it shivers on a high note
Like the best from any choir.
There’s a song left in the leaves
Of cottonwoods on the trail,
Just for riders checking wire,
Checking every post and nail.
That lost song is always heard,
As though its partner is the wind,
A cowboy duet in its joy;
Oh, great bonding being twinned.
And when the rider hears no song,
Hears no wire in the breeze,
Silence tells him it’s gone wrong
And his horse goes ill at ease.
Where wind and wire are music mates,
A cowboy and his horse are matched,
Tight as gloves upon the hands,
To make sure a fence gets patched.
The wind can whistle up a tune
Anytime it feels the urge,
And cowboys riding fence lines
Know where the two best merge.
For it’s the cowboy and his horse,
Perhaps the cattle in a lea,
Who hear the best of musicals,
Wind and wire’s soliloquy.
Tom Sheehan served in the 31st Infantry, Korea 1951-52, graduated Boston College in 1956. His books are Epic Cures; Brief Cases, Short Spans; Collection of Friends; From the Quickening; The Saugus Book; Ah, Devon Unbowed; Reflections from Vinegar Hill; This Rare Earth & Other Flights. His 28 published books include several western collections: The Nations, Where Skies Grow Wide and Cross Trails from Pocol Press; Six Guns, Inc., by Nazar Look, and three titles issued in 2016: The Cowboys, Swan River Daisy and Jehrico. His works have appeared in Rosebud, Literally Stories, DM du Jour, Danse Macabre, Linnet’s Wings, Serving House Journal, Eclectica, Copperfield Review, La Joie Magazine, Soundings East, Vermont Literary Review, Literary Orphans, Indiana Voices Journal, Frontier Tales, Western Online Magazine, Provo Canyon Review, Vine Leaves Journal, Nazar Look, Eastlit, Rope & Wire Magazine, The Literary Yard, Green Silk Journal, Fiction on the Web, The Path, FaithHopeandFiction.com, The Cenacle, and more. In process are Valor’s Commission, Keating Script, and three collections.
He has 31 Pushcart nominations, and five Best of the Net nominations (one winner), and short story awards from Nazar Look for 2012- 2015, and a Georges Simenon Fiction Award. He is the 2016 writer-in-residence at Danse Macabre Magazine.
Image Credit: © Hopkora | Dreamstime.com – Cowboy On Horseback