Thursday, January 10, 2013

PFRA Pickle: a Cowboy poet's thoughts on the pastures

this beautiful image was taken recently at a PFRA pasture where staff were loading cattle
The day before yesterday a message arrived in my inbox from Bryce Burnett, a cowboy poet who is also a cattleman and a patron of the Swift Current-Webb community pasture.

"Enjoy your blog keep up the good work  I have been a patron in the Swift Current –Webb pasture for many many years.

Then Bryce included a short opinion piece he wrote on the topic of the community pastures, speaking on behalf of cattlemen and pasture patrons. For my dollar, it is as good a call for sanity on this question as any I have seen. May this be the honest passion rooted in experience that carries the day when the PFRA pasture patrons gather later this month in Saskatoon.

Here is part of what Bryce sent, including a poem he wrote, called PFRA Pickle. With folks like Bryce onside, we have every reason to hope for a good outcome.

"It is time for the Saskatchewan Party government to stand on their own two feet and stick up for the cattle,ranching and grazing INDUSTRY.  Agriculture is and will remain the basic INDUSTRY in Saskatchewan as the majority of the population in Saskatchewan  is directly or indirectly affected by the sustainability of this INDUSTRY Agriculture – after all we all eat.
Let us not dismantle the structure of the PFRA community pasture system for the sake of ideology.  The majority (we must not forget we live in a Democracy) of patrons, conservationists and those affected by these fragile lands realize the benefits, production and profitability of the present structure, now and into future generations.  This is an opportunity for this provincial government to step up and keep the lands under one umbrella,  it is not necessary to reinvent the wheel.   Forming new individual identities for each pasture will only cost patrons more money which they cannot afford and is needless, for less benefits and a significant loss to environmentalists,hunters and wild life and the Agriculture INDUSTRY.

The domain of the PFRA system in many instances was brought into the fold because of the fragile structure of the land.  These lands have been successfully brought into production and maintained viable by the proficient stewardship of trained and accomplished managers – stewards of the land and extremely important citizens contributing financially , socially and structurally to our communities.  The existing system has given many young producers an opportunity to grow their livestock operations in a positive direction, allowing them a valuable start into the Agriculture INDUSTRY.  Patrons cannot afford to purchase lands and assets which they have already contributed to and in most cases already paid for with pasture grazing fees.

It is time for patrons to come together and let our provincial government grasp the benefits of an existing system for the sustainability of our Agriculture cattle INDUSTRY."

                                               PFRA PICKLE
The government reckoned it’s time to hang the PFRA pastures.  It’s an ideological thing.
We’ll throw it over to Saskatchewan – let those cowboys swing.
Now the Saskatchewan party’s got a hot potato, it’s a political fiasco.
They don’t want it, how to get rid of it, what’s it worth, who in the hell would know.
The feds have set aside Agriculture, Embridge is a much better partner in bed.
Let those cowboys hang, they don’t care – they’ll feed ‘em ecoli instead.
The province agrees, PFRA don’t matter, Agriculture just ain’t their mission.
They’ll spend the money on a football stadium and with it replace Agribition.
They want all the patrons to form individual Associations,co-ops,companies and such.
Patrons will pay more, loose the equity they have and maintain unity – not very much.
Then the First Nations came forth, opportunity for fulfilment of treaty rights to the letter.
For sure politicians wouldn’t be here if their initial immigration policy had of been better.
Conservation,environment and wildlife will all be overturned with a tandem disc.
Only thing for sure is our pasture managers have become the next species at risk.
The government bureaucracy is in a pickle, no one seems to know why or how.
All patrons know – they’ll sure be paying more when this land is grazed by a cow.
Dealing with government levels has become a quagmire, makes one wonder if they’re sober.
Next time you gaze into the blank eyes of your MLA – you might as well just bend over.
                  Bryce Burnett

1 comment:

  1. Those guys shoulda fixed the gate BEFORE corral day!!!


Share this post

Get widget