A Biography of James Orr for “Third Book from the Sun”
James Walter Orr was born in Amarillo, Texas, in 1930, in the fabled dust bowl days. He grew up on a farm and ranch. He has also written under the pen-name of Easy Seeker and ezseeker. He has been a husband and hobo, laborer and engineer, cowboy and truck driver, rancher and roustabout, hod-carrier and concrete finisher, rod-wrencher and pulling unit operator, and everything that has touched any of the above. He has hooked up many a separator, heater-treater and flow line manifold.
He has been a collar-pecker on a screw pipeline, pulled skids on a big-inch line, cut paraffin, handled a pipe jack, used a lazy board, run a gin-truck and hacked cross-ties. He has crumbed ditches and even shot the same. He has piss-anted flow line. He has been a radio activity log draftsman, instrument craftsman and a combiner.
He has performed the necessary surgery on an untold number of bulls and boars. He has notched ears and branded hips, stretched wire and built some of the prettiest fences ever built. He was an expert with a brick paddle. As a kid on the road, he has slept on top of buildings, in box cars, in the fields and under hedges, in empty airplanes in air-ports, cars, vestibules, post-office lobbies, in old boxes, deserted buildings and hobo jungles. He has been a bindle-stiff, if a brown paper bag will pass for a bindle. Oh yes! He has been a pretty good wind-mill man!
He has talked his way through the road blocks of many Indian villages in a South American uprising, and been in the ONLY car that was allowed to traverse the highway.
Other than a host of similar things, he has lived an ordinary life.
This is his third book of poetry.
You come to me because you say you need me.
I come because I cannot stay away.
You weep with me because our love was thwarted.
I weep with you because you cannot stay.
The weasels run, a mighty herd
Of charging little beasts.
They're waiting on King Weasel
To call them to their feast.
Her gray head bows, and in the lamps dim glow,
with steady hand she sticks the end of thread
toward needles eye, but bushy, raveled end
declines to go. She makes another try
SHADOWS OF SEPARATION
I call to you across the miles,
those empty miles which lie between