Cowboy Poetry – Berthoud Pass

 

Berthoud Pass – My older brother Dane and I it would seem once we are together that life in general becomes a tad more exciting than what most folks are accustomed to. I guess I would not want it any different. This is another ode to that special brother bond.

Cowboy Poetry – Berthoud Pass

My brother Dane had a Toyota Land Cruiser in the mid-seventies – back in the day,
We used it for 4 –wheeling in the remote mountains of our Colorado get-a-way.

That Land Cruiser was the color of burnt red like they painted them back then,
Took the Cruiser to the mountains, because we thought we were mountain men.

It had a railroad track bumper for knocking down trees and more than a few dents,
But, it was not the ugliness of this beast that brought about this mountain pass event.

In this tale we went to the mountains to do some winter survival snow shoeing,
Young and dimwitted we did not care that a mountain winter storm was brewing.

Loaded up the Cruiser with snow shoes and rations really late and well after dark,
Our friend Roger, my brother Dane and I thought we were ready to embark.

With Wild Turkey whiskey and beer we pointed that red Toyota towards the west,
With winter mountain fun and wilderness adventure as our goal and our only quest.

Roger was driving since my brother Dane was hung over from the night before,
“Wake me up if we go over the edge” Dane said in the back as he started to snore.

Berthoud Pass road was icy and snow packed and the wind was colder than hell,
Now if that was the end of the story this would be a damn boring poetic tale.

I was in the passenger seat because I was 16 and the youngest of the three,
The snow got heavy and thicker as we headed up Berthoud Pass, Roger and I would agree.

Have to say in this tale that our friend Roger was being careful as he could be,
We ventured up the curvy mountain pass – the snow was so thick we couldn’t see.

At 15 MPH Roger kept the Cruiser between the drop off cliff and the snowbank,
We were doing fine until a van passed us doing 60 and that was built like a tank.

We watched that van pass us like we were standing still with young men’s desire,
Roger looked as he had been dared and then the speedometer went higher and higher.

Roger now with a smile and, “I am going to pass that freaking van look in his eye!”
Now riding with a man possessed – now at 60 MPH I knew I was going to die.

Up and over the top of Berthoud Pass we never did catch that freaking van,
The red Toyota started to spin and spin – I knew this was not part of the plan.

I swear during the three – 360 degree spins that we encountered – that time stood still,
As the spinning plastered my face to the Cruiser window – Roger I wanted to kill.

Round after round – mountain cliff – then snowbank – I almost crapped my pants,
The steering wheel went this way – then that way with an out of control dance.

During all that red Toyota spinning Roger and I shared 3 times the same seat,
Knowing at the end of the spins the Specter of Death we were going to meet.

I almost thank God that the snow was so heavy I could not see the 1000 foot drop,
Finally slamming backwards into the mountain snowbank we came to a sudden stop,

Roger and I sucked up the snot that had spun out of our noses in the ride of the insane,
Dane woke up, “What just happened?” – Roger and I spoke as one- “Shut the f**k up Dane!!”
Kurt James

Kurt James © 2017

Where to buy Kurt James novels and books:

https://www.amazon.com/Kurt-James/e/B01DTOJ7KC/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1513024146&sr=8-2

 

 

Kurt James
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Kurt James

Kurt James was born and raised in the foothills of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. With family roots in western Kansas and having lived in South Dakota for 20 years Kurt James naturally had become an old western and nature enthusiast. Over the years Kurt James has become one of Colorado's prominent nature photographer's through his brand name of Midnight Wind Photography. His poetry has been featured in the Denver Post, PM Magazine and on 9NEWS in Denver, Colorado. Kurt is also a feature writer for Hubpages and Creative Exiles with the article's focused on Colorado history, ghost towns, outlaws, and poetry. Inspired at a young age by writers such as Jack London, Louis L'amour and Max Brand have formed Kurt's natural ability as a story teller. Kurt James "Rocky Mountain" historical fiction series of 3 books that provide western adventure of the early days of the Rocky Mountain frontier and his newly released "Thoughts and Poetry of a Wandering Man" - the (Uniquely Colorado edition) are available in print and download on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads and other fine bookstores. And a few shady bookstores as well. After releasing his novel "The Keegan Trail" in early 2018 Kurt is currently working on his next novel "The Daunting" hoping to release in in August 2018.
Kurt James
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Kurt James

Kurt James was born and raised in the foothills of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. With family roots in western Kansas and having lived in South Dakota for 20 years Kurt James naturally had become an old western and nature enthusiast. Over the years Kurt James has become one of Colorado's prominent nature photographer's through his brand name of Midnight Wind Photography. His poetry has been featured in the Denver Post, PM Magazine and on 9NEWS in Denver, Colorado. Kurt is also a feature writer for Hubpages and Creative Exiles with the article's focused on Colorado history, ghost towns, outlaws, and poetry. Inspired at a young age by writers such as Jack London, Louis L'amour and Max Brand have formed Kurt's natural ability as a story teller. Kurt James "Rocky Mountain" historical fiction series of 3 books that provide western adventure of the early days of the Rocky Mountain frontier and his newly released "Thoughts and Poetry of a Wandering Man" - the (Uniquely Colorado edition) are available in print and download on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Goodreads and other fine bookstores. And a few shady bookstores as well. After releasing his novel "The Keegan Trail" in early 2018 Kurt is currently working on his next novel "The Daunting" hoping to release in in August 2018.

11 thoughts on “Cowboy Poetry – Berthoud Pass

  • December 15, 2017 at 6:09 PM
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    Wonderful story of the youth and the circumstances that we survive when it could have easily gone the other way. Had a similar story myself: when I was 18 , four in a car, the driver, in another dimension on weed, lost control and the car rolled four times before resting against a large tree, before a 100 foot drop. No-one was hurt but I was removing glass from my scalp for a week. And yes I remember that experience of time in slow motion as the glass, suspended around me, just floated. Its a wonder any of us survived our youth; I guess its often true that in youth we can be virtually unbreakable. Great tale Kurt, much enjoyed. PS I bet you gave Dane some grief after missing the whole thing!

    Reply
    • December 15, 2017 at 6:28 PM
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      LOL…Of course Tony I still to this day give Dane grief for sleeping through that death defying ride. Sounds from your escapade that it is amazing that you also survived your youth. I just decided here recently that I was going to write about the things we never told our mom. It is funny that in your experience that time slowed as well – I was wondering if anyone would get that… way funny my friend.

      Reply
  • December 16, 2017 at 3:52 AM
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    Good grief! What a ride that was, Kurt. Tis a shame Dane missed it all. lol Great story and well penned, Kurt. I love it!

    Reply
    • December 16, 2017 at 4:01 AM
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      LOL…Thanks Phyllis – looking back it was one of those things you like to remember and laugh about, but at the time I thought I was going to have to change my underpants.

      Reply
  • December 18, 2017 at 9:04 AM
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    Having heard some of yours and Danes adventures, I am truly amazed you are still alive with only
    minimal brain damage.

    Reply
    • December 19, 2017 at 2:38 AM
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      LOL… Minimal damage? I am not so sure… but, Rick you know me better than others…lol..

      Reply
  • December 19, 2017 at 1:43 PM
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    Fantastic tale Kurt. Ive had my fun in the snow when I was younger, thinking back it was very foolish and careless. Bad weather and whiskey in a car not a great cocktail. Fantastic piece my friend

    Reply
    • December 21, 2017 at 3:21 AM
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      Thanks Paul for stopping by and everything you mentioned is so very true – not that when I was young did I ever think of that – I know I was not the only one that is very lucky and blessed to survive growing up…lol

      Reply
  • January 15, 2018 at 9:40 PM
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    Hey Kurt – Hope all is well with you. I know the weather in your area has been rather frightening. Take care and let us know when you can how you are.

    Reply
  • January 16, 2018 at 2:30 AM
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    Thanks for checking in Phyllis – all is well just been really busy between the day job and finishing my novel “The Keegan Trail” which is now sitting on the editors desk. I have also started a new novel “Grand County -The Daunting” which is a modern western/murder/mystery set in the year 1976 in the Rocky Mountains.

    Reply
    • January 16, 2018 at 5:44 AM
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      Thanks Kurt. Glad to know you are okay – just busy. Your novels sound great. Best wishes for success, which I know you will easily achieve. Take care.

      Reply

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