The Prospector

The Prospector

I strolled up old Bonanza, where I staked in ninety-eight,
    A-purpose to revisit the old claim.
I kept thinking mighty sadly of the funny ways of Fate,
    And the lads who once were with me in the game.
Poor boys, they’re down-and-outers, and there’s scarcely one to-day
    Can show a dozen colors in his poke;
And me, I’m still prospecting, old and battered, gaunt and gray,
    And I’m looking for a grub-stake, and I’m broke.
I strolled up old Bonanza. The same old moon looked down;
    The same old landmarks seemed to yearn to me;
But the cabins all were silent, and the flat, once like a town,
    Was mighty still and lonesome-like to see.
There were piles and piles of tailings where we toiled with pick and pan,
    And turning round a bend I heard a roar,
And there a giant gold-ship of the very newest plan
    Was tearing chunks of pay-dirt from the shore.
It wallowed in its water-bed; it burrowed, heaved and swung;
    It gnawed its way ahead with grunts and sighs;
Its bill of fare was rock and sand; the tailings were its dung;
    It glared around with fierce electric eyes.
Full fifty buckets crammed its maw; it bellowed out for more;
    It looked like some great monster in the gloom.
With two to feed its sateless greed, it worked for seven score,
    And I sighed: “Ah, old-time miner, here’s your doom!”
The idle windlass turns to rust; the sagging sluice-box falls;
    The holes you digged are water to the brim;
Your little sod-roofed cabins with the snugly moss-chinked walls
    Are deathly now and mouldering and dim.
The battle-field is silent where of old you fought it out;
    The claims you fiercely won are lost and sold.
But there’s a little army that they’ll never put to rout —
    The men who simply live to seek the gold.
The men who can’t remember when they learned to swing a pack,
    Or in what lawless land the quest began;
The solitary seeker with his grub-stake on his back,
    The restless buccaneer of pick and pan.
On the mesas of the Southland, on the tundras of the North,
    You will find us, changed in face but still the same;
And it isn’t need, it isn’t greed that sends us faring forth —
    It’s the fever, it’s the glory of the game.
For once you’ve panned the speckled sand and seen the bonny dust,
    Its peerless brightness blinds you like a spell;
It’s little else you care about; you go because you must,
    And you feel that you could follow it to hell.
You’d follow it in hunger, and you’d follow it in cold;
    You’d follow it in solitude and pain;
And when you’re stiff and battened down let someone whisper “Gold,”
    You’re lief to rise and follow it again.
Yet look you, if I find the stuff it’s just like so much dirt;
    I fling it to the four winds like a child.
It’s wine and painted women and the things that do me hurt,
    Till I crawl back, beggared, broken, to the Wild.
Till I crawl back, sapped and sodden, to my grub-stake and my tent —
    There’s a city, there’s an army (hear them shout).
There’s the gold in millions, millions, but I haven’t got a cent;
    And oh, it’s me, it’s me that found it out.
It was my dream that made it good, my dream that made me go
    To lands of dread and death disprized of man;
But oh, I’ve known a glory that their hearts will never know,
    When I picked the first big nugget from my pan.
It’s still my dream, my dauntless dream, that drives me forth once more
    To seek and starve and suffer in the Vast;
That heaps my heart with eager hope, that glimmers on before —
    My dream that will uplift me to the last.
Perhaps I am stark crazy, but there’s none of you too sane;
    It’s just a little matter of degree.
My hobby is to hunt out gold; it’s fortressed in my brain;
    It’s life and love and wife and home to me.
And I’ll strike it, yes, I’ll strike it; I’ve a hunch I cannot fail;
    I’ve a vision, I’ve a prompting, I’ve a call;
I hear the hoarse stampeding of an army on my trail,
    To the last, the greatest gold camp of them all.
Beyond the shark-tooth ranges sawing savage at the sky
    There’s a lowering land no white man ever struck;
There’s gold, there’s gold in millions, and I’ll find it if I die.
    And I’m going there once more to try my luck.
Maybe I’ll fail — what matter? It’s a mandate, it’s a vow;
    And when in lands of dreariness and dread
You seek the last lone frontier, far beyond your frontiers now,
    You will find the old prospector, silent, dead.
You will find a tattered tent-pole with a ragged robe below it;
    You will find a rusted gold-pan on the sod;
You will find the claim I’m seeking, with my bones as stakes to show it;
    But I’ve sought the last Recorder, and He’s — God.

Eye On The Prize

So hey yawll. Been a while since I was here but it is time. Can’t dodge this whole blog thing any longer.  🙂

Been a really break neck pace the past three weeks. Had to get on a damn airplane again and boy how I hate them damn things. All the way from Austin, Tx. to some damn where in Pennsylvania. Finally ended up in Milton, Pa. for my orientation for my new job. It was kind of the same old drill……doctors and testing first to make sure I wasn’t some damn heroin addict or something. Then I even had to take a physical test for lifting. Really? After all my mining time and a lifting test?  he he he. Yeah, I passed that one too.

Then it was the old boring video ……classroom….tests….tests…..more test. Yeah, passed those too. Finally got in my truck after a week of the orientation. A Volvo. Never was too much on those Volvo’s but I got to admit, she is one smooth ride. I actually like the truck a lot. Different from the Freightliners that I am use too but not in a bad way.

I have already been all over the mid-west and to Texas and back to Pennsylvania again. The truck in in the shop for some maintenance tonight and then back on the road tomorrow. I am basing out of Austin, Tx. My sister lives there and has really helped in the transition to the new gig. Thank You ………”Shorty”.    🙂

Well I got to get my Toddy on, don’t get a chance to do that much these days.   🙂

Yawll be cool now, ya hear?   Cheers.




Windy Point Park, Lake Travis, Austin, Tx.

As I sit in my hotel room in Milton, Pa. the boredom sets in.  LOL

I has a chance to visit a place in Austin that I hadn’t been to six I was 16. My Aunt Mary had leased the property know as “Windy Point”. I worked the summer as a campground employee. My best memories of the place was all the beautiful bikinis of course. But believe it or not I also remembered how beautiful the place was.

It hadn’t changed a lot at least physically. There were more trees then and the owner did admit that he had recently cut down lots of Cedars, don’t ask me why. I am a big tree fan but not a tree huger. If your in Texas around Austin get your ass out of the car and off the friggin couch. Go check it out, stay the night because the price can’t be beat.

Anyway, I am into day two of my orientation for my new job. Got all the medical, physical and driving test stuff behind me yesterday. So today is class room stuff, you know, the hard to stay awake for stuff. I hope to get some photos and videos today if I get a break. They have us staying in a Holiday Inn Express out in the middle of nowhere and I do mean NOWHERE. Not a store around and no transportation. Your warned!


A Visit With My Brother Mike Petty

Was on the way to Houston and was close by my brothers so decided to stop in for a visit. With my nomadic lifestyle years can pass between visits with family or friends. Got to take them when I can get them.

Robert, Louisiana is a bustling little town about fifty miles strait north of New Orleans. The little small towns of La. can be very unique and some even spooky. I actually got to go way down on the southern tip of La. to Sabine because Interstate 10 was shut down after the hurricane. Man what a beautiful place to VISIT. I say visit because they get way to many storms and it is fully exposed to the hurricane paths. But check it out if you get a chance, it will be worth the time and the distance this way to Houston instead of I10 is about the same.

Anyway, Mike and family live in Robert. Its is a laid back place, not to big and not too small but definitely Louisiana. It was a nice visit before the black mold ingesting job of  Houston hurricane cleanup.


Saying Good Bye To Yahoo

I’ve been trying to post to my blog for weeks now with no success. Yahoo has done something that will not allow me to publish on MY OWN FUCKING SITE !!!

I’ve had enough. This is the first step in saying goodbye to Yahoo. This blog thing is a hard one because I have been blogging for over ten years with them on the”Movable Type” platform. Yes is was a crappy cheeped down version of movable type but I had got use to it and it hurts to say bye………..NOT !!!!! It feels frigging good!!!

Now I have one more big one to get rid of… frigging email with Yahoo and that is way longer than the blog, maybe twenty flippin years. Crap! Everything I do is attached to that junk they call “secure professional mail”. Yeah right. Yahoo, the king of the hacked web sites in the world.

Ok, enough. I know I’ve been away for awhile now and I hate it. But I am back on track and so now with “Word Press” I hope to get back to ripping and roaring soon. This whole thing will morph fast as I learn the in’s and out’s of Word Press. So hang on.

Just on a parting note, I have been in Houston the past three weeks or so working the hurricane clean up and making some money. Now I am in Austin and I should be flying out of here on the 24th to go to orientation for my new truck driving job in Pa. So like my life has always been it is a whirlwind of change still.

Peace Yawll