Bryce Angell is a cowboy poet. Angell was raised on a farm/ranch in the St. Anthony, Idaho area with approximately 75 head of horses. Horses remain an important part of Angell’s life.
Angell shares his poetry with Cache Valley Daily every Friday.
I saddled up one morning, ‘twas a warm and gentle breeze. And being mid-July I
never thought I’d almost freeze.
My father walked up to me said, “Your raincoat ain’t tied on.” I gazed up to a
clear, blue sky. Then mounted. I was gone.
I’d only worn a t-shirt, but my hat was pulled down tight. My hat would keep the
rain off. Heck, I knew I’d be alright.
If I’d only known what really lay ahead of me that day. I’d have heeded all my
father’s words. I darn sure had to pay.
At noon I hopped down off old Stretch. My mind kept telling me. Find a place for
shelter, build a fire. Just wait and see.
There were no dark clouds in the sky. The sun was baring down. I weren’t about
to build a fire, look like the dumbest clown.
But by afternoon the sky turned black, for sure the dankest cold. I knew I was in
trouble. Wished I’d done what I was told.
The cold dark clouds soon emptied out. They soaked me head to toe. The
weather turned to hail and then the wind began to blow.
I knew if I climbed off my horse and set a steady pace, my body would maintain
some heat and walk me off this place.
My mind was still coherent. I recalled what dad had said. “Your horse will throw
off heat. Just snuggle up. You won’t be dead.”
So, I wrapped myself around old Stretch. The heat was coming through. My
saddle horse had saved me. Didn’t have to say adieu.
Just then I heard a tree branch snap. I saw my father’s face. He came riding in on
Shortcut and I yelled out words of grace.
He didn’t have to say a word. His look plumb pierced my soul. He tossed a coat
and slicker. Didn’t offer an earful.
Well, that was fifty years ago. It seems like yesterday. Now I always tie a raincoat
even on a sunny day.
‘Cuz the coldest that I’ve been was 1969 July. The mountains ain’t forgiving and I
dang near said, “Goodbye.”
And when the other cowboys say, “You carry too much gear.” I don’t worry what
they say. It’s Mother Nature that I fear!