Saddle Up Saloon

“What’s happening on stage this week, Kid?”

“Poetry. Open mic.”

“Shut the front door!”

“Yep, but it ain’t quite a slam. Fer one it ain’t competitive, an’ fer two—”

“No, Kid, shut the front door, or the back door. Somethin’s gotten inta the saloon, cain’t quite figger whut it is runnin’ about the place. Do ya see ‘em? Jeez, Kid, looks like little … cowboys… in chaps…”

“Pal, have you been samplin’ the wares? Yer eyes is playin’ tricks on ya, is all. Focus, we gotta git tready fer this poetry open mic. Like I was sayin’, with our set up it’s kinda hard ta see an’ hear the spoken word so— ”

“Spoke an’ words? Like spokes of a wheel?”

“Uh, sure Pal, an’ this here saloon’s the hub. So it’s spoken word at the saloon this week. ‘Cept folks gotta write it fer us. So a slim slam, poems of 99, 59, or 9 words, short an’ sweet. Or savory. Or raw. Folks kin jist leave their slim slams as a comment.”

“Kid, shouldn’t ya a done this in April, when it was Poetry Month an’ folks was doin’ thet NaPoWriMo thang? We’re inta the third week a May now.”

“Hey, now, May be, Pal, but April was kinda rough, fact I ain’t so sure there was an April, sure seemed like one long March. Anyway’s this is jist a fun thing ta do any time an’ it’s also ta hep celebrate the tremendous growth a the off shoot poet tree that’s out back a the saloon. Yep, through the miracle a fiction, an’ plen’y a fertilizer, thet little whip grew in a flash an’ is darn near as big as the original back at the ranch!”

“Well, thet’s real good, Kid, folks’ll find inspiration at thet tree. Heck, even I writ some buckaroo-ku at the ‘riginal poet tree. But do you ‘member our first time poemin’? It was fer the 2017 Rodeo, when the Ranch’s Poet Lariat, Jules, gave thet gem of a contest, Septolet In Motion.”

“Oh, yeah, that was a fun form. Fourteen words in seven lines with a break somewheres. Then it was you Pal, come up with the first buckaroo-ku.”

“Yep an’ soon after’s when the ‘riginal poet tree showed up in front a the bunkhouse. An’ now we got this saloon an’ a second tree out back. I jist hope you don’t go gittin’ stuck an’ fallin’ outta this tree like ya done afore.”

“Pal! I seen ‘em, yer teeny tiny cowboys. Quick little fellas, ain’t they? An’ lissen. Is that piano music?”

“Sounds like, Kid.”

“Hello? Kid? Hello?”

“Come right in, the Saloon door’s always open. What kin we do ya for?”

“I think I’m looking for A. Kidd…”

“Well, sure ‘nough, I’m Kid, an’ this here’s Pal. My gosh you’re a jumpy one. Ya got fleas or somethin’?”

“Uh, no. Not fleas. Something else. Faeries.”

“What’s yer name, stranger?”

“They call me Twitch. Yow! What?”

“I’ll bet they do. So what brings ya here ta the Saddle Up, Twitch?”

“Someone by the name of S.H. Ortiz hired me to make a sign. I lost the address where I was supposed to deliver it but recall that the name A. Kidd was mentioned. I gaggled the name and was directed here.”

“D’ya mean ta say googled?”

“Ugh, my words and letters have been all mixed up because of the chapfaeries. Anyway, Kid, here’s your sign.”

“Not sure it’s meant for me Twitch, but let’s have a look. Oh, that is beautiful! But ‘otter pee’? Ya sure yer sign’s meant ta say ‘otter pee’?”

“Ya oughta if ya gotta, Twitch. Restroom’s down thet way.”

“No! Those darn chap fairies moved my letters around. And now I can’t remember what exactly the sign was supposed to say.”

“Relax, Twitch, we’ll hep ya out, won’t we Kid?”

“Sure thing. Pal, ya reckon what Shorty thought was errorists all this time was really chapfaeries?”

“Could be. Twitch, what kin ya tell us ‘bout these here chapfaeries?”

“You know, dang western faeries who wear chaps and just want to be at the center of everything. I could not keep them off the sign. I didn’t know they were attached to the piano wood I harvested from the woods. Every time I turned around, they were dancing on the sign and two of them stuck.”

IMG_5815“Whoa, stop. Back up there Twitch. What is piano wood?”

“The chapfaeries led me to a spot far out in the woods. And there on top of a hill was an upright piano. So I salvaged it. Used some of the wood from it for your sign.”

“Is thet why we’ve been hearin’ piano music?”

“Yes, Pal, when the faeries are around, the piano wood makes music.”

“Huh. Well let’s git back ta figgerin’ thet sign out. If yer sure it ain’t s’posed ta say otter pee, then what? Rope! Thet makes sense… extra letters… rope teet, naw. Trope. Trope Tee? Naw.”

“Twitch, look it that. One a them fairies is tyin’ yer boot lace fer ya.”

“Shhh… ‘Nuther un is workin’ at the letters on the sign… p-o-e-t-t-r-e-e… Poet Tree! Kid, it’s a sign fer the poet tree!”

“Which poet tree? The one back at the ranch by the bunkhouse? Or the one out back a this here saloon? Or is it fer the poet tree at World Headquarters? Dang, I sure wish that Charli Mills kept better track a things.”

“Charli Mills? World Headquarters? In Hancock, Michigan?”

“Yep, that’s right Twitch.”

“Oof. I got turned around. This sign is supposed to be at Headquarters— it’s for the Roberts Street Writery!”


“Well, why don’tcha rest up here at the saloon afore heading back ta the real world, Twitch, least long ‘nough ta round up them feisty little chapfaeries.”

“Yeah, Twitch, hang out a while. Mebbe that sign will inspire folks ta leave some poetry in the comments fer folks ta injoy.”

“Do you have cherry mead behind that bar?”

“Yep. The Saddle Up has anything and everything imaginable. Though I never imagined we’d have chapfaeries.”

“Ok, folks, it’s a poetry slim. It’s open mic all week long at the Saloon. Slip yer poems inta the comments. Try an’ git ‘em ta be jist 9, 59, or 99 words.”


A Poem,  by A. Kidd

No particular reason

Doesn’t have ta rhyme

That’s nine!

Doesn’t have ta be Ranch related

Or ’bout characters at a saloon

Could be, as poems often are

About the sun or other stars

Or the constant moon

Serious or funny, entirely up to you

Limerick or couplets or some buckaroo-ku

In whatever form, leave some nifty lines

That’s fifty-nine!

Going ta the back forty

Jist ta show it kin be done

Inspired by them chapfaeries

So mischievous and fun.

And what a talented artist, that Toj who made the sign

Perfect for Charli’s Writery

An’ guess what? That’s ninty-nine!


The poet tree sign was made by Tammy Toj Gajewski at Red Rabbit Studio, her base in Rabbit Bay, MI. Toj is a ‘teacher of joy’ and happily retired. She earned her BFA at UW- River Falls and her MPA from Northern Michigan University. You can find her walking her dogs in Rabbit Bay and playing with her Chaphaeries in her studio.


If asked, Pal & Kid will deny that they spill from the pen of D. Avery. They claim to be free ranging characters who live and work at Carrot Ranch and now serve up something fresh every Monday at the Saddle Up Saloon. If you or your characters are interested in saddling up for a wild ride as a saloon guest, contact D. Avery at .

Next week- blog blustering!

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