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Memoirs


Palace in the Popple

Written by George Augustus "Gus" Bixby, ca. 1905

Donated by Billie Pett
 

Gus and Rob Bixby, lived in Trego, Gus having been born in St Croix County in August 1880, and died in Trego in 1969. Rob, born 1884, died in Trego in 1968. They were a couple of old bachelors that loved the great outdoors.  Apparently Gus also loved reading poetry...and  he dabbled at writing it, too. Here is a poem he wrote about their hunting shack north of Trego.

Palace in the Popple

  It's a smokey raunchy boar's nest,
    with an unswept drafty floor,
  And pillow ticking curtains,
    with knife scars on the floor.

  The smell of a pine knot fire,
    from a stovepipe that's come loose,
  Mingles sweetly with the bootgrease,
    and the copenhagen snoose.

  There are workworn .30-.30's
    with battered steel stocks,
  And drying lines of longjohns,
    and of steaming pungent socks.

  There's a table for the bloody four,
    and their game of two card draw,
  And there's deep and dreamless sleeping,
    on bunkticks filled with straw.

  Ed and Lawrence, by the stove,
    their gun talk loud and hot,
  And Rob, has drawn a pain of kings,
    and raking in the pot.

  Harvey's drafted again as cook,
    he's peeling spuds for stew,
  While Gus, wanders in baggy pants,
    receiting Dan McGrew.

  Nowhere on earth is fire so warm,
    nor coffee so infernal,
  Or whiskers stiff or jokes so rich
    nor hope blooms so eternal.

  A man can live for a solid week,
    in the same old underbritches,
  He can walk like a man, spit where he wants,
    and scratch himself where he itches

  I tell you boys there's no place else,
    where I'd rather be come Fall,
  Where I eat like a bear and sing like a wolf,
    And feel like I'm Bull Pine tall.

  In that raunchy cabin out in the bush,
    in the land of the Raven n Loon,
  With a tracking snow lying new to the ground,
    at the end of the rutting moon.

  George Augustus (Gus) Bixby
   Circa 1905




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