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Kansas Profile – Now That’s Rural: Geff Dawson – Poetry Rodeo

The rodeo is coming to town! But this isn’t a competition of riding bulls or roping calves. This competition takes the form of rhyming words. For the first time ever, the National Cowboy Poetry Rodeo is coming to Kansas.

Geff Dawson is the new organizer of this event, which he is bringing to Kansas for the first time. Geff grew up at Abilene, where he was always around horses and rodeos. After studying at K-State, he and his wife Dawn bought a place in rural Wabaunsee County north of Alma, population 785 people. Now, that’s rural. Geff worked at the Aye Ranch for a time and now manages the Illinois Creek Ranch.

Geff Dawson, cowboy poet.
Geff Dawson, cowboy poet.

Like me, Geff is a cowboy poet. Like me, it was not something he planned to do.

“I’d come home from work at the ranch and tell my wife about something funny that happened that day,” Geff said. “She’d say, `You ought to write that down.’”

He wasn’t very quick to take the time to write those things down, but one day when he did sit down to record the day’s events, he tried to write in rhyme. He found it was a fun way to tell a story. Geff became a cowboy poet.

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