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Lyr Add: The cattleman's Prayer

Q (Frank Staplin) 28 Aug 14 - 03:39 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: The cattleman's Prayer
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 28 Aug 14 - 03:39 PM

THE CATTLE MAN'S PRAYER

Lyr. Add: THE CATTLE MAN'S PRAYER
Anon., 1886, Socorro Bullion

Now, O Lord, please lend Thine ear,
The prayer of the cattle man to hear;
No doubt many prayers to Thee seem strange,
But won't you bless our cattle range?

Bless the round-up year by year
And don't forget the growing steer;
Water the land with brooks and rills
For many cattle that roam on a thousand hills.

Now, O Lord, won't you be good
And give our stock plenty of food;
And to avert a winter's woe
Give Italian skies and little snow.

Prairie fires won't you please stop?
Let thunder roll and water drop;
It frightens me to see the smoke-
Unless it's stopped, I'll go dead broke.

As you, O Lord, my herds behold-
Which represents a sack of gold-
I think at least five cents per pound
Should be the price of beef the year 'round.

One more thing and then I'm through-
Instead of one calf give my cows two.
I may pray different than other men,
Still I've had my say, and now, Amen!

Socorro Bullion, October 30, 1886

From http://www.cowboypoetry.com/strays.htm

First recorded by Carl T. Sprague, "Cowman's Prayer, 1928, Victor 21402.
A musical score based on his singing is printed in Austin E and Alta S. Fife, 1969, Cowboy and Western Songs; Clarkson N. Potter Inc., and 1982 edition, Bramhall House; No. 126, p. 338.


Lyr. Add: THE COWMAN'S PRAYER, Thorp
N. Howard (Jack) Thorp, 1921

Now, O Lord, please lend me thine ear,
The prayer of a cattleman to hear,
O doubt the prayers may seem strange,
But I want you to bless our cattle range.

Bless the round-ups year by year,
And don't forget the growing steer;
Water the lands with brooks and rills
For my cattle that roam on a thousand hills.

Prairie fires, won't you please stop?
Let thunder roll, water drop
It frightens me to see the smoke;
Unless it's stopped, I'll go dead broke.

As you, O Lord, my herd behold,
It represents a sack of gold;
I think at least five cents a pound
Will be the price of beef the year round.

One thing more and then I'm through,-
Instead of one calf give my cows two.
I may pray different from other men,
But I've had my say, and now, Amen.

Thorp heard the song in a cowcamp near Fort Sumner, on the Pecos River, New Mexico.
P. 52, no tune given.

N. Howard (Jack) Thorp, 1921, Songs of the Cowboys; new edition, 1984, University of Nebraska Press.

The DT has the song lyrics as sung by J. R. (Jim Bob) Tinsley, "The Cowman's Prayer."

Lyr. Add: THE COWMAN'S PRAYER Ohrlin

O Lord, please lend to me thine ear,
The prayer of a cattleman to hear,
No doubt the prayers may seem so strange,
But I want you to bless our cattle range.

And bless the roundups year by year,
And don't forget the growing steer.
And water the land with brooks and rills
For the cattle that roam on a thousand hills.

The prairie fire won't you please stop,
The thunder's roll and the lightning shock,
It frightens me to see the smoke,
Unless it stops I'll go dead broke.

And view, O Lord, my happy home,
The mortgage takes a sack of gold.
I think at least forty cents a pound
Should be the price the whole year round.

Just one thing more and then I'm through,
Instead of one calf give my cows two.
I may pray different from other men,
But I've had my say, and now, amen.

Updated version (1960s?) by Glenn Ohrlin, pp. 125-125, with musical score. His recording of "The Cowman's Prayer" is provided with the songs (two Evatone 33 1/3 soft discs) with his book (1973).

Glenn Ohrlin, 1973, The Hell-Bound Train, a Cowboy Songbook, University of Illinois Press.

Gail Gardner, composer of "The Sierry Petes," wrote of his ranching days; "....but when I think of the years it forgot to rain, or some of the hard winters with six inches of snow on the oak brush, I am fairly content to settle down in the old arm chair and watch the sky stay up." (Gardner, Orejana Bull, for Cowboys Only).


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