A group of jolly cowboys, discussing plans at ease,
Said one, I’ll tell you something, boys, if you will listen, please.
I am an old cowpuncher, and here I’m dressed in rags,
I used to be a tough one and go on great, big jags.
But I’ve got a home, boys – a good one, you all know –
Although I have not seen it since a long, long time ago,
I’m going back to Dixie once more to see them all.
Yes, I’m going to see my mother when the work’s all done this fall.
When I left my home, boys, my mother for me cried.
Begged me not to go, boys, for me she would have died;
My mother’s heart is breaking, breaking for me, that’s all.
And with God’s help I’ll see her when the work’s all done this fall.
That very night this cowboy went out to stand his guard,
The night was dark and cloudy and storming very hard;
The cattle they got frightened and rushed in wild stampede;
The cowboy tried to head them while riding at full speed.
While riding in the darkness so loudly he did shout,
Trying his best to head them and turn the herd about,
His saddle horse did stumble and on him he did fall.
The boy won’t see his mother when the work’s all done this fall,
His body was so mangled the boys all thought him dead.
They picked him up so gently and laid him on a bed;
He opened wide his blue eyes, and looking all around,
He motioned to this comrades to sit near him on the ground.
Boys, send my mother my wages – the wages I have earned –
For I am afraid, boys, that my last steer I’ve turned.
I’m going to a new range, I hear my Master’s call.
And I’ll not see my mother when the work’s all done this fall.
Bill, you take my saddle; George, you take my bed;
Jack may have my pistol after I am dead.
And please think of me kindly when you look upon them all,
For I’ll not see my mother when the work’s all done this fall.
So charlie was buried at sunrise, no tombstone for his head,
Nothing but a little board, and this is what it said:
“Charlie died at daybreak: he died from a fall.
The boy won’t see his mother when the work’s all done this fall.”
– Sent in by DOROTHY HANSEN, Thomas, Ok.