Poems from around the County

"Dutch Creek"
Years ago I grew up on a farm, there was a "crik"
which ran thru the farm and lots of trees on it's banks.
I spent a lot of time on the "crik" and now in my older years
I think about how much fun I had then,
but didn't realize it at the time

"The Crick"
Do you remember as a young 'n, When the summer turned real hot
You could find some super pleasures, That didn't cost a lot

As a kid I was real luckym To have a crick nearby
A swimmin hole with waterm blue Wild birds and butterflys

Nearby there was a mulberry tree, The fruit was dark and sweet
The birds would flock there one by one, To have themselves a treat

My Mom hung out her washing, On those bright and sunny days
The bed sheets always smell so good, Air dried by warm, sunrays

But oh when the birds ate berries, It really gave her fits
When she looked at all those bed cloths, With spots like purple 'zits'

The old red headed woodpecker, Would sit upon the pole
And peck away day after day, To make a nesting hole

A pebble thrown nearby his perch, Would fool him every time
He thought it was a bug for sure, Upon which he thought he'd dine

The old cottonwood.. which stood so tall, Was home to some honey bees,
Year after year they worked so hard, Storing up for the winter freeze

The killdeer was a clever bird, Her act of hurt was best
She did this real convincing act, So you wouldn't find her nest

I think about those summer days, And the bird I sometimes tricked
And know I was a lucky lad, To have grown up along a "crick"
Bill Browning - August 08, 2001

"Times On Dutch Creek"
When I was just a small lad, And living on the farm
I always had a playground, Far away from any harm

The summers were a pleasure, Nearby in woods and creek
A place where I would spend my time, Bout' every day and week

There were butterflies and frogs, Snakes and rabbits too
Even saw the turtle doves, And also heard them coo

I rode my pony every day, Dolly was her name
Didn't always use the saddle, Just hung onto her mane

We rode in grass, The creek bed too
Even got in the quicksand, A time or two

Cowboys and indians was my game, Then for' I knew it...winter came
Dolly spent the winter resting up, Me back to school with my pail and cup

I think sometimes of the fun I had, Me and Dolly in that mystery land
Dutch Creek now is hardly a stream, Sorta makes me wonder, if it all was a dream

At thirty two, old Dolly gave it up, Laid down to rest, and couldn't get up
Dad went to town and hired old Newt, He had a gun and knew how to shoot

Mom she cried, and Dad felt bad, Many happy years old Dolly had
Carried three brothers and a sister too, Then later me..and friends a few

Dolly was buried in our back yard, Underneath a tall, old walnut tree
Nearby in graves, two pet dogs sleep, Some of the things I remember
About Old Dutch Creek
by Bill Browning

"The Old Barn"
The old barn stands alone today, It really looks quite sad
I remember well when it was built, Back when I was just a lad

Roland was the family, Who built this mighty barn
Right across old Dutch Creek, From the Harry Browning farm

Charlie was a preacher, And quite a carpenter too
There really wasn’t very much, That he really…. couldn’t do

William, Enid, Laura too, Pitched in and did their part
To help with all the labor, Right from the very start

I see the barn each time I pass, And think about them all
Remembering Mrs. Roland, And when she milked “Old Maude”

Oh how she could cook the food, From the garden that they grew
I even got into their patch, For melons.. a time or two

The cats weren’t safe from Enid and I, We baptized them many times
And Charlie taught me how to whistle, Which I thought was mighty fine

William taught me how to swim, I liked him as a pal
But then he fell in love with Jean, And I lost out to a gal

Now the barn stands idle, But my memories linger on
Someday I’ll pass that way again, And sadly see the old barn gone
Bill Browning - Feb 5 2002

"Driver of the Band Wagon"
This poem was found in our "SHORT" family collection,
it refers to Reuben Short from Kinderhook as well as "Grub Hollow".
Reuben was my Dad's uncle.
I think it was written by a Harley Boyd, maybe in 1944.
Contributed by Pat Pryor Chapman

Do you remember the wagon owned by are country band,
bought from a passing circus that traveled through the land.
With it's arched shaped body all flowered and scrolled,
and the "Grub Hollow Band" painted on so very bold.

It's the driver of the wagon this story is all about;
he was the very best in the country there is no doubt.
His muscles were like steel, he was strong as an ox,
the band was perfectly safe, with him in the drivers box.
At the head of the big parade, when the band began to play,
those horses would try to run away.
He handled those four horses, so clean and snowy white,
with expert skill and experience, that brought thrills of delight.

But before the parade was over those horses came to know,
the driver was their friend and obeyed his every command.
As they came a prancing through the crowded street,
the folks would shout and cheer the man in the drivers seat.
He did not play an instument in this little country band,
but never missed rehearsal nor the chance to lend a hand.
Always smiling, and happy, always willing to work,
no matter how tough his duties, he would never shirk.

Choosing the way of railroad to round out his life's career.
His promotions came so fast, he was faithful and so sincere.
Now foreman of a construction crew, his work is never laggin.
More success to you - Reuben Short; Driver of the Old Band Wagon

.... Harley Boyd, "44"
REUBEN SHORT - 1883 - 1956
Born in Kinderhook Township, IL. to Mark Hardin and Adelle Truax Short,
on 18 Aug. 1883, Reuben married Ella Green.