Listening to every heart
Last Rodeo Before Millennium
We yearly visit the local county’s Abilene Rodeo,
“Wild Bill Hickock” and all of the events;
we eat the great fair food, see all the shows,
watch the kids cram the rides, check out all the tents.
This rodeo was different some how, a final passing of time
all of the regulars were there, and the August night cool and fine.
My husband loves the clowns, and I the bull riding event,
but through the night my lack of expression I now repent.
It all started with the National Anthem, our glorious song,
the young lady who sang was great, and charmed the crowd along.
I saw something take place, and a tear came to my eye,
and now I kick myself mightily, as you’ll read by and by.
For little ol’ Abilene town, a pride it has indeed
you could see that in the kids, you could see it in their steeds.
The clowns they joked a’plenty, there was a master emcee
my mind kept flashing back and I didn’t like what I had seen.
The entertainment was wonderful, fair smells filled the air,
well trained horses were handled with skillful care.
No serious mishaps, a few cowboys hit the fence
the bulls did their best to heighten the crowd’s intense.
Popcorn was passed along, pop and lemonade too
no one went hungry, not even the popcorn crew.
When the lady riding six white horses came into our view
we stood and cheered at her acumen to hold the horses true.
While taking a break I thought of all in the Forum here
for while I was in the restroom, I couldn’t help but notice how
the TP was placed, so some of you will cheer,
for the TP was positioned on the roll coming over and down!
When I went back the clown was joking about the cowboy
who was arrested last night for exposure – we were incensed!
“But that’s OK” said the clown, “as you can see by the cowboy here,
he was finally released for extreme lack of evidence!”
The night progressed amid fanfare fine,
but I couldn’t get the scene off of my mind
about the National Anthem being sung to the crowd,
so now to you I will voice my thoughts aloud.
While the flag was raised and the National Anthem sung
we all stood as we should, and the song was then begun,
there was a little girl in front of me who wanted to sing along.
As I stood and smiled down on her, the mother shushed her song.
I was aghast, and should have said something then
that this little four year old knew all the words, and when
you see the trouble in schools, kids who don’t obey any rules
I thought that his mother’s shushing her child to be very cruel.
For all this little four year old girl wanted
was to participate by singing the Anthem’s song
for she couldn’t ride any of the horses, she just wanted
to join in, she was not doing anything wrong.
I still feel I was amiss in not setting the mother right
and I’m still kicking myself with all of my might.
One thing I was able to do, to compensate for my lack,
I later complimented the little girl, and patted her on the back.
So I know when I visit the rodeo next, in the new millennium
if I see a parent shushing a child during song, I will then
ask if I can hear the child’s voice sing the Anthem out clear
for this Country’s future belongs to all of the children here.
19 August, 1999
Words will always express our feelings true. ~~~ KRJ
Look, then, into thine heart, and write ~~~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
[This message has been edited by Sunshine (edited 08-19-99).]