Petersen: The twine that binds
It’s been a long winter. Spring should be around the corner. However, yesterday, we had another snow storm. Well, half snow, half rain. Roads are a woefully-muddy mess. Ranchers are using up the last of their winter hay and some are having to buy more, which means bale string accumulates everywhere.
In the bed of the pickup. Or hanging like orange hair off a broomstick stuck vertically in the corner of the truck’s framework. Or making a floor mat on the passenger side of the vehicle. Sooner or later the wads of string might make it to the burn barrel, but don’t count on it until green grass arrives.
THE TWINE THAT BINDS
Now, baling string’s a common thing
Real useful on a ranch
It fixes fences, ties up gates
And maybe holds up pants
It binds together bales of hay
Of brome and orchard grass
Or timothy or clover or rye
Or grains of any class
When winter comes, and snow lies deep
A ranch man loads a bunch
Of string-tied bales into his truck
To take the cattle lunch.
Each time he busts a stretched-tight string
And scatters out the hay
He’s left a-holding loops of twine
That pile up day by day
What a rancher does with string
Reveals which traits are native
Cuz some are neat and some are slobs
And some downright creative
Now some just drop it on the ground
That ugly tangled string
It makes a mess and chokes out growth
Of new grass in the spring
While others toss it in the truck
In piles behind the cab
By spring the string has turned into
A heavy, concrete slab.
Or if the stockrack’s fastened on
It makes a handy place
To loop the strings like strands of hair
A kind of burlap lace
Or if the wife does arts and crafts
In a unique artistic way
She might braid those colored strings
In handsome macramé
No matter how the stuff gets used
When winter comes around
In every rancher’s pickup truck
More bale strings will be found!❖
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