( archives )
by Jane Hebden
Now you’ve all heard of old Paul Bunyan
and his faithful old ox Blue.
But here is a tale seldom told
I wish to impart to you.
It’s about a tough young padre
who had a heroic goal.
To venture to Yukon timber land
and save the Lord some souls.
O’Flare was this young crusader
Who had a strong aim for his life.
That was his love for every man
he’d relieve the lumberjack’s strife.
So he made it up to tall timber
a place called Black Wolf Claw.
Where his tender eyes could not believe
all the sinners he saw.
Whiskey, cards and cussing
around the camp fire bright.
Could he teach this lot of souls
how to see the light?
For twenty and three years he stayed.
Befriended the timbermen all.
Worked side by side a-chopping
and many heard the call.
Souls were saved and comrads made.
A fine life he built there.
Until one day through Black Wolf Claw
came a great rampaging bear!
At the working men it charged
determined to have them done!
But O’Flare wrestled it to the ground
and saved them, every one!
They made a monument to him
their padre, worker and friend.
To be certain all could see
his memory would never end.
So if you climb to timberland
to fish or hunt if you dare.
Don’t forget to tip your hat
to the heroic Father O’Flare.