Two very important things here, folks.
One, check out this adorable Etsy shop, KeepTheFaye. I’ve purchased nearly all versions of her postcards for my postcard project. I love her designs!
Two, did you know Shel Silverstein wrote a poem about Paul Bunyan? Here in rural Minnesota, you can’t drive ten miles without seeing some reference to Paul Bunyan. What a character. It got me wondering if other states have their own folk characters like Paul and Babe? I can’t think of any. ANYWAY! I was delighted to find this poem and subsequently, when I went on a Shel Silverstein rabbit hole search, I found out he wrote Boy Named Sue by Johnny Cash! How did I not know that??
Here’s the hilarious KeepTheFaye postcard I mailed with a snippet of Silverstein’s poem on the back. The poem is too long to fit on one postcard so the recipients had to google the ending.
He rode through the woods on a big blue ox,
He had fists as hard as choppin’ blocks,
Five hundred pounds and nine feet tall…that’s Paul.
Talk about workin’, when he swung his axe
You could hear it ring for a mile and a half.
Then he’d yell ‘Timber!’ and down she’d fall…for Paul.
Talk about drinkin’, that man’s so mean
That he’d never drink nothin’ but kerosene,
And a five-gallon can is a little bit small…for Paul.
Talk about tough, well he once had a fight
With a thunderstorm on a cold dark night.
I ain’t sayin’ who won,
But it don’t storm at all…round here…thanks to Paul.
He was ninety years old when he said with a sigh,
“I think I’m gonna lay right down and die
Cause sunshine and sorrow, I’ve seen it all’…says Paul.
He says, ‘There ain’t no man alive can kill me,
Ain’t no women ’round can thrill me,
And I think heaven just might be a ball’…says Paul.
So he died…and we cried.
It took eighteen men just to bust the ground,
It took twenty-four more just to lower him down.
And we covered him up and we figured that was all…for Paul.
But late one night the trees started shakin’,
The dogs started howlin’ and the earth started quakin’,
And out of the ground with a ‘Hi, y’all’…comes Paul!
He shook the dirt from off his clothes,
He scratched his butt and wiped his nose.
“Y’know, bein’ dead wasn’t no fun at all’…says Paul.
He says, ‘Up in heaven they got harps on their knees,
They got clouds and wings but they got no trees.
I don’t think that’s much of a heaven at all’…says Paul.
So he jumps on his ox with a fare-thee-well,
He says, “I’ll find out if there’s trees in hell.’
And he rode away, and that was all…we ever seen…of Paul.
But the next time you hear a ‘Timber!’ yell
That sounds like it’s comin’ from the pits of hell,
Then a weird and devilish ghostly wail
Like somebody’s choppin’ on the devil’s tail,
Then a shout, a call, a crash, a fall–
That ain’t no mortal man at all…that’s Paul!