Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, SELLING A COW IN VERMONT, by DANIEL LEAVENS CADY



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SELLING A COW IN VERMONT, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Whoa! Whitey; morning, neighbor bell
Last Line: They're passing not to come again.
Subject(s): Animals; Cows; Farm Life; Trade; Vermont; Agriculture; Farmers


"WHOA! Whitey; Morning, Neighbor Bell,
I heerd you had a cow to sell."

"You heerd it crossways, Neighbor Gale,
I hain't no special cow for sale."

"I heerd from Wiggins, up above,
You had a cow you guessed you'd shove."

"I'll slap a price on any cow;
What's that to Wiggins, anyhow?"

"I want a cow for Monday night,
But yourn, I guess, is ruther light."

"I ain't your clothespin, Neighbor Gale:
No light cows right 'round here for sale."

"I want a cow for Tuesday's cart,
And Hart has got one—one-armed Hart."

"He tossed the crows two head last year;
There ain't no Hart stock stopping here."

"Of course, 'taint none of my concern
If you hain't got no cow to turn."

"I've got a cow that's beef, alright,
But I ain't here to say she's light."

"I guess, By Gosh! I know the cow,
Her mother stops with Daddy Dow."

"Yes, Sir; she chews a native cud;
She ain't no pop-eye Jersey Blood."

"I had a cow last week from Wright
For twenty-nine, but yourn is light."

"No cows 'round here for twenty-nine,
Leastways, no cows that run with mine."

"If she was all the cow on earth
I s'pose that's 'bout what she'd be worth."

"I'm done with giving cows away,
There's stanchion room and she can stay."

"You see I butcher Monday night;
I'd like the cow—too bad she's light."

"Too bad there ain't no trade in you;
She'll peddle out for thirty-two."

"You've got 'er too tarnation high;
I want a cow a man can buy."

"She's dried tight off and punkin plump;
She ain't all brisket, bones and rump."

"I ain't a-butchering jest to see
How big a lunkhead I can be."

"Well; I shan't call it no disgrace
To beef that critter on the place."

"You squeeze my wallet mighty thin,
But Monday morning drive 'er in."

And so we boys got up at five
And snaked 'er in—she wouldn't drive.

Now, note all ye of thoughtful build,
That cow was bought and sold and killed;

Yet on her head no price was set,
No offer ever made or met;

But through some psychometric skill,
Or gumption, call it what you will;

Them dickerers knew where each would break,
What one would give and 'tother'd take.

'Twas thus Vermonters used to trade,
And when were better bargains made!

Hats off to these real trading men—
They're passing not to come again.





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