By Baxter Black


            There's a fingernail moon hangin' low in the sky.

            The crickets make small talk as he passes by.


            As the gentlest breeze stirs what's left of his hair

            He spits and he sniffs it, but no moisture there.


            He stares at the field and remembers the year

            These same eighty acres paid the loan free and clear.


            But these last thirty days have scared him to death.

            The dirt's as dry as a horny toad's breath.


            He called up his banker after supper tonight,

            They talked for an hour and he's sure gettin' tight.


            Ol' Thelma had kissed him and went on to bed

            So he took a walk, thought it might clear his head.


            The doctor has told him he has to slow down,

            Sell out the home place and move into town.


            'Move into town! What the hell would he do?"

            He shook off the thought and took a fresh chew.


            A bachelor cloud, thin as fog on a mirror, 

            Crossed over the moon and then disappeared.


            He sniffs at the air that's still dry as a bone,

            And takes one more look at the seeds that he's sown.


            He'll be back tomorrow if somethin' don't change,

            Just hangin' on, hopin', and prayin' for rain.