Updated: Sep 2
Come gather ‘round me friends
and I’ll tell you of the men
who rode the trail many years ago.
Adventure was their life
and Freedom was their wife
and their Spirit was the Great Red Buffalo.
For riders in those days
needed neither pay nor praise.
They were happy just to ride beneath the sun;
through Summer’s dust and Winter’s snow,
wherever four Great Winds would blow
and sleep beneath the stars when day was done.
No map did they use
Nor compass for their clues.
The Spirit always showed them how to go.
And they followed with all trust
through the snow and through the dust
along the trail of Red Buffalo.
So you see the trail would lead
wherever there was need
for heroes who would fix all things gone wrong.
And when their job was done,
they’d ride off toward the sun
and sing some old familiar cowboy song.
Now the heroes in this tale
no longer ride the trail,
but will gladly show a young man where to go
to become a lifelong friend
of snow and dust and wind
along the trail of Red Buffalo.
*”Spirit Trail” was composed by my lifelong friend, Don Hoover
Author’s Note: We were chatting by phone just the other day, Don, Jack, Jim and me. Don and I grew up inside wild imaginations. The things we did and survived? And yes there was a Red Buffalo Trail (just past the Catbird Seat) that ran the length of a block along where the backyard property lines met across the street from me, along back behind Don’s house. We were six to ten years old, a lifetime. As we traipsed along the trail on imaginary horses, shinny cap pistols at our side, daunting cowboy hats atop.
We were free, free spirits.
In my mind today, I can see every crawl-thru hole in the fence, bush, tree or shrub, every crook and nanny of that once famous trail. I even know where buried treasure lies inside that bush hideout out back behind Johnson’s garage. It’s probably still there to this day, some nigh seventy years ago!
Boys grew up from kids to men, and men to old men. We each went along separate but parallel journeys together, now keeping in touch and remembering tall tales of days of yore. our spirts are still out there on The Red Buffalo Trail.
For those of you willing to explore further, you can find our stories in song #7 in the “Tom Strums Album“ on the Home Page of this here website. If you find us, leave a “comment” or perhaps a ❤️
Bummer! I found out today that my lifelong friend, first friends in life we were to each other, circa 1947, Don Hoover passed away May 2022. Also today I found out my lifelong cohort and friend who XC skied across Michigan with me among other rousty things, Lou Tornatzky passed away this past May As well. When it rains it pours. Add to this that we buried my best friend in life (outside family of course), George Geist only two weeks ago. You can find my eulogy a couple posts back at https://www.tenbrunsel.com/post/two-gentlemen-2 Well heck, the list whittles down and I ain’t going nowhere no how! Their spirit and memories remain with me. RIP my friends🙏
A good deal of my poetry and writings are about death, dying and life between life and life after life, and the like. It’s not’st that I am depressed, it’s just a favorite topic of poets. So I’m gonna write on, God willing and the creek don’t rise this high.