Another tribute to Baxter Black

2022 June portrait, WYO Writers

There are a few poems that give me pause, make me really pay attention to the words. This one, by Baxter Black, is one of them.

In this age of wokeness and people being so afraid to say what they truly think or write things on Facebook or other media because someone might be offended or get mad, it makes me appreciate the line even more when Baxter wrote, “It’s a comf’terbul feelin’ when you don’t have to care ‘Bout choosin’ your words. . .” Even when you write a simple fact, not an opinion or a snarky comment, there are those who take offense and suddenly decide you are no longer friends. That’s where Baxter’s words, “They’re proud of yer good side and forgive all the rest,” are especially meaningful to me.

Take Care of Your Friends  

by Baxter Black

Friend is a word that I don’t throw around

Though it’s used and abused, I still like the sound.

I save it for people who’ve done right by me

And I know I can count on if ever need be.

Some of my friends drive big limousines

Own ranches and banks and visit with queens.

And some of my friends are up to their neck

In overdue notes and can’t write a check.

They’re singers, or ropers, or writers of prose

And other, God bless ’em, can’t blow their own nose!

I guess bein’ friends don’t have nothin’ to do

With talent or money or known’ who’s who.

It’s a comf’terbul feelin’ when you don’t have to care

‘Bout choosin’ your words or bein’ quite fair

‘Cause friends’ll just listen and let go on by

Those words you don’t mean and not bat an eye.

It makes a friend happy to see your success.

They’re proud of yer good side and forgive all the rest.

And that ain’t so easy, all of the time

Sometimes I get crazy and seem to go blind!

Yer friends just might have to take you on home

Or remind you sometime that you’re not alone.

Or ever so gently pull you back to the ground

When you think you can fly with no one around.

A hug or a shake, whichever seems right

Is the high point of givin’, I’ll tell ya tonight.

All worldly riches and tributes of men

Can’t hold a candle to the worth of a friend.

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