A surreal-looking sun beaming down on a desert, with a small lake nearby.

“Cowboy” by Elliot Dillabough

Elliot Dillabough is a student of political science, a musician and an all-round rounder. His work is often centered on the dissonance between a romantic (and cliché) representation of love, rugged individualism, the beauty of nature, and the often less-than-sublime relationships we have with these ideals. “Cowboy” aims to explore this tension and invites the reader to reflect on the archetype of the cowboy-hero.


I want to ride off into the sunset, villains laid low in their graves,
Maybe a distressed damsel saved
But I don’t own a horse and even if I did
My eyes, they might burn on that low-hanging sun
I would go blind, get lost, drop my gun
And I’d need to do it all again when tomorrow comes.

You can follow Elliot on Instagram @elliot_dillabough.

This piece is part of the in medias res Jan. 2021 “Reflection” Issue. You can read the full issue under the tag “Jan. 2021.”

Image: Yliaster; Paracelsus (1887) by Marsden Hartley (Public Domain)