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Poetry By Jim Serviolo
from Valley Center, California


We were sittin' in the back yard
sippin' on an ice cold tea
there were Peter, Matt, and Corie
and my wife sittin' next to me

We were talkin' bout' our family
and all the days gone past
when the children asked their mother
how she made her marriage last

When she rolled her head and gave a laugh
it took us by surprise
she said: "the Guides for Happy Marriages"
are just a pack of lies

She said: "The recipe for happiness"
isn't written in a book
and all the paths of life are different
no matter which one that man took

There comes those times in all our lives
when the dark consumes the light
and we're troubled, scared, and lonely
and nothing makes it right

So when I look back on just what it took
to keep together my man and me
it seems the price we paid for happiness
was just absolutely free

You see: it doesn't cost a dime to say
"I Love You", everyday
and to hold a hand or give a hug
can make a person's day

But when I look back upon our lives
I think it's safe for me to say
the thing that made our marriage last
was asking God to light the way



 The three of us we had it made
Peter, Matt, and me
we learned to do things for ourselves
we were one tough family

 Up at dawn we did our chores
our parents saw to that
but after school back at the ranch
we rode, roped, and bulldogged the calves

 Then one day our lives were changed
Mom brought home this little bundle
sure enough this life we loved
soon began to crumble

 How could something that seemed so small
command so much attention
soon it seemed we lived our lives
in a constant state of suspension

 The rodeos we were riding in
came with a brand new twist
after we roped and tied up the calves
we were taking care of Sis'

 The three of us, we saw her grow
and turn into a lady
now the rules have changed with watching her
and it's driving us plum crazy

 The phone keeps ringing off the hook
these guys are EVERYWHERE
she has us running 'round the clock
WE KNOW why they are there

 When guys come calling, we'll have a talk
it'll be their chance to listen
they'll know the rules we have for dating
or they just might end up missin'

 Yeah, the three of us we had it made
and now it's plain to see
that bundle Mom brought to our home
has meant the world to Peter, Matt, and me



Today .... was a good day
My daughter's calling for her mom
and I'm up and out of bed
she's wet, cold, and hungry
run the bath, change her clothes, time I got her fed

 My son is up and running now
I see he wet his bed
he's drawing pictures on my walls
run the bath, change his clothes, time I got him fed

 The man I love is hurting
it breaks my heart to see
I'm there to help at any time
but he hates to burden me

 Read me my favorite story, Mommy
come play out in the yard
he took my doll and hit me, Mommy
spank him Mommy, spank him really hard

 What's for lunch? We're hungry, Mommy
.....but that's not what we like
We're not tired for our nap
we want to ride our bikes

As the children sleep, time to pick things up
vacuum, dishes, and wash the clothes
time to spend with my hubby now
where the time goes I'll never know

 When the kids awake
it's in the car and head out for the stores
food, drinks, toys and clothes
always needing more

 What's for dinner? We're hungry, Mommy
Why does it take so long?
Can we watch cartoons before we go to bed?
Lay with me Mommy, Can you sing me a song?

 Now I've got some time to tell my man
"I Love Him" is what I'll say
we cuddle and we share this time
YEAH; Today .... was a good day



 If I close my eyes I see her
jumpin' in my arms again
she's made me feel so special
from the time her life began

 A gift my wife could only give
a miracle so rare
I tremble as the time flies by
her love I know I now must share

 Now I feel so out of place
an old man who's holdin' on
how's a Dad to say, "I love you"
Look into my eyes .... into my eyes

 She tells me, "Dad, I've found the man,
... he takes my breath away"
I tell her I'm so happy
but did I lose my girl today?

 Help me blow out all the candles, Daddy
teach me to throw  the ball
Can you help me with my homework, Daddy?
I think I'm growing, Daddy, let's go mark it on the wall

 Now I feel so out of place
an old man who's holdin' on
How's a Dad to say, "I love you"
Look into my eyes .... into my eyes

It used to be so easy
I was her only man
now she's grown into a woman
God, I've just got to understand

 Now I feel so out of place
an old man who's holdin' on
How's a Dad to say, "I love you"
Look into my eyes .... into my eyes



It's colder this morning than most have been lately
he's sippin' his coffee and cream
he puts on his shirt, his jeans, and his boots
today he'll be facing his dream

 There's not a man in this world
that would walk in his shoes
'cause today he must reach down inside
at the end of the arena
inside of the chute
his fate is awaitin' a ride

 The cowboys, they know who he's drawn for the day
it's the one that has beaten them all
he's never been ridden'
not even been close
he'll stomp and horn you when you fall

 This gray Brahma bull from the dark side of hell
as nasty as any you'll find
just give him his space, aint no one to mess with
they call him "The End of the Line"

 The crowd's coming in, they're filling the stands
they're wanting to see this gray bull
the stories of blood, broke bones, and lost lives
have packed in the stands over full

 Nine riders have bucked out
but they've tasted defeat
it's now down to only one ride
the Gray Bull and the Cowboy
it's time for these two to collide

 The crowd has gone silent
they know what's up next
the chute holds the demon inside
they gather around him to set him up right
and the cowboy settles tight round his sides

 The rope round his chest
pins the glove to his hide
the stage has been set now
in 8 seconds only one will survive

 The gate cracks wide open
now the gray lunges upward
he kicks and he rolls into hell
the cowboy, he's spurring giving all that he's got
but the gray drops him down in the well

 The rider sees darkness
but refuses to die
and he digs his spurs into grays side
he pulls himself out of the shadowy grave
and the bull knows it will take one more try

 This time it's his head that he throws back to get him
and they meet with a thunderous crack
his jawbone is broken, his lip has been split
but his grip still refuses to slack

 The clock has struck 8
the gray knows he's been beat
now it's PETE'S name that is spoken with pride
he's the World Champ
and your younguns' will hear
of the war
that we now call....
"The Ride"



 There he is again
sittin' up there in the stands
can't quite remember when I noticed
he didn't act like all the other fans

 He seemed to watch my every move
like a father would a son
but never stopped to talk awhile
after all the rides were done

 He went to every show I had
he never missed a date
the circuit I was ridden' in
covered nearly every state

 I won my share but a time or two
I almost broke my neck
I cracked my ribs and broke my nose
but walked away from all the wrecks

 My partners, they're all amazed
at how I cheated fate
each time that bull came after me
something turned him back to the gate

 And when the finals came around
I was siting number one
but as I rode my hand let go
I tumbled down, my chances done

 As I lay there I felt his horn
this time it hit its mark
my chest was crushed beneath the weight
and suddenly it all went dark

 The time went slowly that next few months
but I healed up good and strong
starting over was really tough
but I was back to riding before too long

 Then I saw that man again
sitting up there in the stands
this time I caught him before he left
I had to know, Who was this man?

 I asked him if he'd tell me why
he was always there to watch me ride
he said that God had sent him here
to protect my skinny hide

 "That time you fell in Idaho,
his horn lightly grazed your chest
You lost your grip in Tulsa
his hoof ripped open your vest"

 He was there each time I fell
to keep me safe and strong
said; "God was taking care of me,
no matter what danger came along"

 I said; "If all that were true
where was he in that final round,
just when I needed him the most
that bull pinned me right down to the ground"

 Just then that old man grabbed a cane
and he gave me a crooked smile
he said, "That was his greatest work
to keep me a ridden' for awhile"

 He said, "That when I hit the ground
I wouldn't get away
he stepped between that bull and me
that's why I'm here today"

 Now I'm not a Bible totten' man
but there's one thing I'd like to say;
"No matter what we do in life
God's there to light the way"



 Did they see his face
Did they look deep into his eyes
Three kings had found the savior child
The "Son Of God"; as prophesied

 Did they understand his words
As he sat there on the steps of stone
This child who spoke of God above
This child who called the heavens home

 So many people turned their backs
On the One to set them free
His message seemed so simple...
"Trust in God", and "Trust in Me"

 Oh, If only I had been there
Oh, what I could have done
If He had come to visit me
I would have followed the "Savior Son"

 Did they hear his voice
Did they feel the love he shared
So many people walked away
So few of them who really cared

 Did they see the miracles
The loaves, the fish, the wine
A blind man sees, a dead man lives
Surely, this would change their minds

 Oh, if only I had been there
Oh, what I could have done
If He had come to visit me
I would have followed the "Savior Son"

 Did they see a man filled up with hate
As He stood before the crowd
Pilot simply washed his hands
"Put to Death", they cried out loud

 They whipped, and stoned, and beat this man
His blood would stain his cloth
They mocked him with a "Crown of Thorns"
Then nailed him to a cross

 Oh, if only I had been there
Oh, what I could have done
If He had come to visit me
I would have followed the "Savior Son"

 Did they see the stone rolled back
Didn't Thomas touch his side
He had freed us all from Satan's hand
Man's atonement now satisfied

 But to wish to have been there
To say what we would have done
Is nothing less than hidding
From today's presence of the Son

 You see, Today He walks among us
He's inside both you and me
His gift to us is man's "Free Will"
He conquered death to set us free

 Oh, I know  that He is here now
Oh, I know  there's work undone
He's called us all to spread His word
Can we follow  the "Savior Son"?

 So remember why we are here
It's up to us to get things done
He's here with us in every breath
Thank God for the "Savior Son"



 Starting every morning
before the sun is up
walking out to begin the feedin'
sippin' on a coffee cup

 The chores don't change much from day to day
the work is basically the same
the animals need lookin' after
or sure enough they'll come up lame

 This office that she's working in
it suits her to a tee
'cause the pictures that hang on her office walls
are the mountains and the sea

 Each chance she gets to saddle up
and ride up in the hills
makes how she's chose to live her life
seem worthy of the bills

 Side by side with all the cowboys
one thing we know is true
you'll get a damn good workin' hand
in a buckaroo named Linda Sue



 I've heard it said so many times
"Just listen to your heart"
but to understand what is being shared
takes "Trust" right from the start

 "Trust" your eyes to lead the way
to find the beauty beneath the cover
it's always more than meets the eye
when you find that perfect lover

 "Trust" the touch that is soft and tender
from the hand that holds you near
the feel of love flows to your core
soon acceptance replaces fear

 "Trust" the sound of the voice inside you
it knows you best of all
the truth you seek is yours alone
no other hears its call

 So trust yourself to find the way
when life's journey becomes real dark
trust will break the chains of doubt
and let you "Listen to your Heart"



I guess it's safe for me to say
there are seasons of the heart
our lives can change at any time
whether together or apart

 The paths we walk each and every day
shape the who and what we are
but a season change of a persons heart
can take their spirit to the stars

 Our hearts can tell us when to laugh
or when it's time to cry
but listen hard to what it says
good or bad it just can't lie

 There is one thing that is required
when you're dealing with your heart
you'll get an honest answer
only if you're honest from the start

 So as the seasons of the world go bye....
summer, winter, spring, and fall
don't forget the "Seasons of the Heart"
within, is the greatest beauty for us all



 I hadn't seen him in quite awhile
when my son walked through the door
he asked me if I had some time
I heard myself say; "That's what I'm here for"

 He started speaking slowly
as he leaned back in his chair
he said; "I'm not the boy you used to know,
and it's time I cleared the air"

 He said, "I've touched the frozen tundra
looked a grizzly in the eyes
fished waters filled with salmon
slept beneath the northern skies"

 "I've sailed across the oceans,
touched the shores of foreign lands
wore the colors of my country
peoples lives were in my hands"

 "I've touched some bulls in Texas
wrapped-up and called for the gate
heard the cheers of 10,000 fans
when I rode one for the eight"

 "I've touched a lot of ladies
some could take my breath away
one I thought I'd have forever
but things always got in the way"

 "But I look at who I am
and feel an emptiness deep inside
and Dad, I look at you
and see a man that's filled with pride"

 Well, I told my son to look around
at what was hanging on the walls
"These pictures tell my story
and my life fills up these halls"

 "I watched that magic moment
when man walked upon the moon
but it pales to when I held you
when you first walked across our room"

 "I held a wrestler in my arms
when he rose above the rest
he learned to pay the price it takes
if you want to be the best"

 "Your brother held me that snowy day
he had played the greatest game of his life
he told me he was a stronger man
cause' Dad taught him what was right"

 "Your sister held my hand
as she introduced me to the crowd
a sign of love extended
it told me she was proud"

 "I've held a job for many years
I've learned a lot along the way
I understand the Golden Rule
honest work for honest pay"

 "I've held tight to just one lady
one partner for all time
she gives me all the love she has
and I give her all of mine"

 So here's the way I see it;
"You've looked but haven't seen".....
"To TOUCH something or To HOLD it
are completely different things"



I watched my girl at ten years old
workin' up a sweat
behind her trainer and her horse
a sight I won't forget

Her tiny boots, blue jeans, and hat
she was a sight to see
the smile that never left her face
meant all the world to me

 Before too long these two had grown
into a riding team
I watched them in the show arena
the buckskin and the teen

Just what it takes to be the best
and stand out in her go
HIS strength, HER beauty
their team just lets you know

 Playing on her hockey team
she's giving all she's got
she won't back down from anyone
no matter what the cost

She's not as quick as most of the girls
and shorter than the rest
but when she gets into the game
she stays up with the best

She doesn't get the accolades
she doesn't lead the way
she fights for every inch she gets
what's inside is what makes her play

 The woman that she's grown into
this person that I love
I wonder what her secret is
that's made her rise above
and then these words come back to me....
it's the passion, it's the love

 Today, my burden has been lifted
as I lie here in this bed
she slips her hand into my own
and lightly strokes my head

She tells me everything she is
is because of just one thing
and quietly she says to me....



 God gave us each our own music
and the world to be our stage
but most of us are living
with our music still unplayed

 This gift that we are given
is ours to use if we dare
it is our greatest tool
to show how much we care

 "Martin" shared his music
gave us all a dream
his message was very simple
"Let Freedom Ring"

 "John" stood up and played his music
the song he shared was true
"Don't ask your country to make things right
ask instead what YOU can do"

 A diminutive committed lady
so fragile and so weak
"Teresa" touched every nation
each time that she would speak

 A simple comic and actor
he shared his special song
"Bob" lifted up our spirits
from World War II to Vietnam

 One song was sung so long ago
that's been shared throughout the years
a "Carpenter" gave his music
that will save all those who hear

 Your music has the power
our future's in our hands
never doubt that words can change the world
it's the only thing that ever has



 I watched him as he held my son
and I thought of all the days gone by
an old man just rocking in his chair
I felt a tear run from my eye

 To see the age he carry's now
the lines upon his face
the songs of life are quiet now
as he struggles with life's pace

 His hands that held a lifetime
now are weary from the strain
his steps are slow and careful
the path he walks is filled with pain

 I love to sit and talk with him
of when he walked in a young man's shoes
his stories paint the picture
of a man who's paid his dues

 He fought for us in WWII
put his life out on the line
went to hell and back again
the pain kept hidden in his mind

 They took their boats up to the beach
his buddy by his side
then he heard his partner hit the ground
he stopped to hold him as he died

 Later, planes from up above
found there mark upon the deck
water would engulf the ship
to the deep would lay to rest

 Most the men went overboard
before this ship could seal their fate
but he noticed someone missing
and stayed on to find his mate

 He found him lying on the deck
a gaping hole right through his chest
he carried him up to the stern
sat him down and tried to rest

 Then he took him in his arms
and they fell into the sea
he would carry him to safety
but this time it wouldn't be

 They struggled and they screamed
as they fought to stay afloat
but no one heard their calls
and one slipped away from hope

 He swam until he found a raft
holding thirty men or more
smoke and fog had filled the air
the water froze them to their core

 His ship went down beneath the waves
the screams of men had filled the air
three days of hunger, pain, and cold
as they floated in despair

 He threw a rope across his shoulders
closed his eyes and began to swim
slowly they all began to move
thirty men, the raft, and him

 The men; they say, what happened next
was a miracle of will
as they moved through the fog, the smoke, and rain
the raft hit hard against a keel

 Each man was grabbed and lifted up
the flag red, white, and blue
and every man now owed their life
to the one they barely knew

 A few years went by
when a fiery crash held two men inside
a third was thrown out to the ground
he lay unconscious on his side

 He woke to find the burning car
his buddies breathin' their last breaths
then he scrambled up and crawled inside
and pulled them out of certain death

 His life turned down another road
as a husband and a dad
all he ever gave in life
was all he ever had

 You see, he put me on his shoulders
and carried me through life somehow
today God seals the circle
it's my chance to serve him now

 He's given more than life to me
showed how  to serve your fellow man
taught me there's no greater gift
than to extend a helping hand



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