Old Boots and Silver Spurs

I heard the other day that another ranch was being sub-divided.  Every time I hear those words I feel a little breath knocked out of me.

I don’t mean to sound dramatic, but in a small way it’s what you feel when you hear the neighbor across the valley passed on.  When I think about it, the two situations are quite similar.

No, nothing as precious as a human life has expired, but with every ranch and farm that is sold, another small piece of rural America does die.  Fertile farm soil, once sub-divided, can never again grow the produce we need.  Pasture and rangeland will never again be able to sustain cattle and sheep herds.

I can’t blame the rancher and farmer.  It is nearly impossible for the small rancher to make a living to support his family anymore.  That is why so many have one or two sidelines trying to support the way of life they are trying to hang on to.

I feel no ill will toward those who have to sell; sometimes there is no other option.  There is just a twinge in my heart knowing another old pair of boots and spurs are sitting in the corner by the door.




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