Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
Sep 2016
Clem, the rodeo clown
wears a bold painted smile,
a bright plaid shirt and bib overalls
with cuffs too short for his legs.

Between the rides and roping -
Clem banters with the emcee,
wheeling off groaners and
scrambling in and out of his barrel-
playing the air-headed bumpkin.

But Clem is nobody's fool;
when that gate opens, his real work begins.

Bull and rider explode from the chute
and the game is on.
The cowboy weaves and writhes to stay on top
for that eight golden seconds
that will earn him his pay
against a half ton of feral energy
stomping and lurching to fling him to the earth.

With eyes as keen as a hungry hawk,
Clem tracks every buck and lurch
for any peril sign - and then it happens:
the rider is hurled airborne,
landing inches from the driving hooves.

Clem seizes the cowboy with
a linebacker's grip
and swings him safely over the fence
as wranglers speed the bull from the ring.

The show goes on and Clem
has plenty more jokes for the crowd
who knows he's never a barrel of laughs
when a rider's life is on the line.
Robert C Howard
Written by
Robert C Howard  Estes Park CO
(Estes Park CO)   
Please log in to view and add comments on poems