Dan Gibson, Storyteller/Banjoplayer
Sample Stories and Verse
Copyright 1997 by Dan Gibson
The service was ending, the words had been said,
He was a good hand, but now Dusty was dead.
Our Padre was solemn and quietly spoke,
Then he opened a letter Old Dusty had wrote.
The words that he left for his friends and relations
Said, "Bury me not, I want a cremation."
None of his kinfolk had come to the church,
Which left all his buddies, that's us, in a lurch.
But, his words were too sacred to be left unheeded,
So we took him to town and did what was needed.
When the fire was over he was poured in a pot,
They handed him to us. We said, "Thanks, a lot."
The day had been long and we needed a drink,
So we went to a tavern for some quiet to think.
We put Dusty down, while some spirits we swallowed,
We drank and we stared, conversation soon followed.
"Could someone explain," asked William McPeak,
"Where we should put Old Dusty for keeps?"
"The words that he left us gave not a clue.
"Now that he's ashes, what do we do?"
We talked about sharin' him, say a month at a time,
But Dusty never was the travelin' kind.
Three-finger Pete offered space on a shelf,
In the corner of a barn off by itself.
But, Dusty, it seems, was allergic to hay,
So it wasn't a place that he'd pick to stay.
He kept a small garden near Medicine Gulch,
Maybe he'd find contentment as mulch.
But, mixin' with dirt was out of the question,
That's why he wanted the cremation session.
Coli, the cook, said, "Grind him up finer,
"He'll make good fillin' for a three-minute timer."
"But, he hated your cooking," shouted Jonathan Blake,
"Besides, just being dead ain't the first time he's late."
We drank one more round, then three or four more,
When John Goreman, the foreman, demanded the floor.
"We know he loved women and gambled and drank,
And smoked big ceegars, so I'm tellin' you frank.
"Gents, as I see it, the place that'd be best,
Is where we all know Old Dusty'd find rest."
We looked at each other, straightened our ties,
And stood up as one while tears filled our eyes.
We picked up the pot, and bore it away,
Then poured Dusty out in a roadhouse ash tray.