Skip to main content

Oklahoma Agriculture in the Classroom

Songs and Poems


by Edward Lueder

Leather, wry, and rough,
Jaw full of chaw, and slits
For eyes - this guy is tough.
He climbs the slatted fence,
Pulls himself atop and sits;
Tilts back his cowboy hat,
Stained with sweat below
The crown, and wipes a dirty
Sleeve across his brow;
Then pulls the hat down tight,
Caresses up its sides,
And spits into the dust
A benediction.
Gracelessly, his Brahma bull
Lunges into the chute
And swings a baleful
Eye around, irresolute.
Vision narrower still,
The man regards the beast.
There's weight enough to kill,
Bone and muscle fit at least
To jar a man apart.
The cowboy sniffs and hitches at
His pants. Himself all heart
And gristle, he watches as
The hands outside the chute
Prepare the sacrificial act.
Standing now, and nerving up,
He takes his final measure
Of the creature's awful back.
Then he moves. Swerving up
And into place, he pricks
The Brahma's bullish pride.
The gate swings free, and
Screams begin to sanctify
Their pitching, tortured ride.