The Cowboy Poem

"Where The Virginian Got His Man"


Come on Boys, an' ride with me

For a Trip back to the Past.

We'll stop at The Occidental,

And step through the Looking Glass.

Here everything's just like it was

In a far, far different Age

When the Occidental wrote the Rules

On hist'rys unwrote Page.

Her very name means "Western"

This fine ol' Grand Hotel.

Where workin' hands, who ride for Brands

Rub elbows with the Swells.

She sits at the foot of the Big Horns

In regal splendor there,

She's the aging Queen o' the Prairies

With Roses in her Hair.

Now priceless Orientals

Still grace the well-worn floors

And Crystal Chandeliers

Still hang above the doors.

There's china in the Dining Room,

And everything's First Class

Where the Present is overshadowed

By reflections of the Past.

The floor still creaks and History reeks

'Til you can hear the Coyotes call,

And the Ghosts of Cattle Barons

Still roam these Hallowed Halls.

Here deals were made as cattle herds

And ranches all changed Hands,

And famous Cowboy Singers

Have played their one-night Stands.

She was lost one night, in a Poker Game

By a man with a Second-best Hand

And her walls are lined with Pictures

Of Men who, they say, had Sand.

Now the little Gal who owns the place

Is a genuine Western Buff,

And to make your stay more Pleasant

She simply can't do Enough.

Many a Trail-worn Drifter

Has Stopped here feelin' Rough,

And when a Cowboy's broke n' Hungry

She'll write it on the Cuff.

Mister Wister holed up here

And dreamed a Master Piece

In an upstairs room by a Fireplace

Where mem'ry still has Lease.

Butch and Sundance slept here, too

Tom Horn got drunk, they say,

An' bragged he'd kill every Cow-thief

That did not ride Away.

It's faraway and Mystical,

In a Place called Cowboy Land —

It's the Occidental Hotel,

Where The Virginian Got His Man.

— Dan Hess ('05)