LOMA, Colo. - This week, Dixie introduces us to a man who plays a key role in keeping our western heritage alive.
Although Loma rancher, Terry Nash, always a rancher at heart, was away from it for awhile, he soon managed a full-time job, ranching and developing his passion for telling the rancher's story thru his cowboy poetry.
"I grew up, it was a farm/ranch operation out in eastern Colorado, out in Idalia, Colorado, and was around cattle and agriculture all my life," Nash revealed.
Cowboy poetry came about after a stop for an iced tea in 1981 ended up introducing him to a performer that had a profound impact on Nash's life.
"There was a cowboy off in the corner with his guitar, sitting up on the stage. He was singing to my heritage, and it was waking me up, and I was inspired," Nash explained. "And I sat there as long as I could listening to him playing those songs and... from then on I knew what I really loved."
A move to the Western Slope got him back to ranching, and opened up his cowboy poetry world.
"There's a couple here in (the) Grand Valley named Tom and Rhonda Lee Sharp, and they were doing cowboy poetry gatherings down at Two Rivers...," said Nash. "And I started going down there, I had a poem or two that I had written, and they had an open mic station when I could get up on stage and read my poems."
It was here in western Colorado where he found his true love.
"I married Kathy and we're raising hay, and she had the horses already, and we started with a little herd of cattle," Nash explained.
He loves performing for all sizes and types of groups.
"...You can get that many people giggling at everything you say, it's, it is a lot of fun," he said.
As Nash explained, there is an art to being a cowboy poet, most critical, he says, is to write what's in your heart and what you know.
"...And if it's in there it'll come out," he explained.
There's a Grand Junction cowboy poetry gathering coming soon, to entertain and remind us of our rich western heritage.
"It's a fun gathering," Nash said. "I think there's about 15 of us, 15 performers. We'll be gathered at the Museum of Western Colorado the first and second of November."
That gathering takes place at the Whitman Education Center on 4th and Ute in Grand Junction.
As Nash shared what cowboy poetry has brought to his life, it was obvious that he's the real deal.
"I've got a big family out there that I didn't have before cowboy poetry," Nash explained. "It absolutely amazes me, the number of people that I know and think highly of that I've met through cowboy poetry."
If you're interested in the November 1st and 2nd cowboy poetry events in Grand Junction, visit the Museum of Western Colorado website. You can also call 970-361-1136 for more information.
For more information on Terry, his CD's, how to book a performance, and more, visit Terry's website or call 970-261-6037.