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Cowboy Poetry by John Duncklee

John Duncklee is an award-winning author of sixteen books. His published work covers fiction, non-fiction, satire, short stories and poetry.
Prior to his writing career, John was a university professor in both the United States and Mexico, a cattle rancher, Quarter Horse breeder, designer of mesquite wood furniture, and served his country in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War.
He lives in New Mexico with his wife, Penny, an illustrator
and artist.

Awards and Recognition:

$5,000 Unrestricted fellowship for excellence in poetry:
Arizona Commission on the Arts.
Author of the Year: Friends of Branigan Memorial Library.
Las Cruces, NM
Member of the Authors Guild and Western Writers of America
Spur Award for best western poem 2008
Western Writers of America


John Duncklee

No more corridos
It was fun making them
It was fun composing them
It was fun playing and singing them
But no more

Mexico is gone
America is gone
Money owns both
Drug cartels own both
Supply and demand

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(Author note: The Arizona Commission on the Arts awarded John Duncklee a $5000 unrestricted fellowship for excellence in writing for El Corrido de Antonio Beltran The Western Writers of America awarded their Spur for Best Western Poem for this poem.)

By: John Duncklee

He had listened to the tales of his father
about the days and months away
in the land that paid in dollars
the trips north
the bus to the border and the walk along the river that runs north
hiding days and walking nights
watching the migra
stopping at ranches and farms
meals sometimes for work
sometimes just a meal

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John Duncklee

Chico was a cowboy, the only trade he knew
He rode in to my camp one day, from then our friendship grew

His home was down in Mexico, where the Rio Yaqui flows, but he
crossed the "line" when just eighteen with his saddle and his clothes

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John Duncklee

Off in the corner of the corrugated shed
The old saddle lay unnoticed, half hidden by its layer of gray-brown dust

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John Duncklee

She was one of the old ones with rings on each horn
Hide close to her bones
Cockleburrs matting her tail, cholla on her nose
In her eye a look of forlorn

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John Duncklee

Past the jungle of rich mens’ castles
The canyon’s mouth opens to the mountain’s soul
Canyon walls covered with grasses
Some shrubs here and there
A place apart
A place to share
A place about which to wonder
The old windmill sucking air

Read Full Poem>>

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