LAST OF THE WEST KANSAS COWBOYS

Roust out, we’re burning daylight

Horses don’t saddle themselves

Dust in the blood, boots in the mud

Kicking up spent shotgun shells

 

Sure ain’t no step for a stepper

Sun up and out riding pens

Never alone when he’s out on the road

Every stranger he meets is a friend

 

Last of the west Kansas cowboys

Last of the old so-and-so’s

Last of his kind you’ll ever see ‘round

Greatest one you’ll ever know

 

Thrown more than once from the saddle

Been busted. Hell, he nearly died

But a cowboy, of course gets back on his horse

The hurt that’s the worst is your pride.

 

Last of the west Kansas cowboys

Last of the old so-and-so’s

Last of his kind you’ll ever see ‘round

Greatest one you’ll ever know

 

A thousand miles, four wheels on gyp rock

Beats fourteen hours out plowing dirt

Now the years and the days are slipping away

But a cowboy never tells you when he hurts

 

Last of the west Kansas cowboys

Living the last of the years

When he’s really gone, I’ll still carry on

But I’ll fill the Ogallala with my tears

With my tears

This is a song about my father, who was a cowboy in every sense of the word. My earliest memories are him heading out before sunrise to ride the pens at the feedyard, checking and caring for sick cattle. He trained horses. He farmed. He was a rural mail carrier, and later a travelling salesman.

He passed shortly away after I wrote this song, after a long battle with Alzheimer's. 

Much of the songs is made up of his trademark colloquialisms. The 'Ogallala' referenced in the song is the Ogallala Aquifer, the massive aquifer that sits under the High Plains, and which supplies water the more arid parts of America's breadbasket. Industrial farming has been draining this resource for more than 50 years, and the aquifer is being drained faster than it can be replenished. 

Ted 'T.P' Crist

1943-2019

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© 2020 Maple Run

"Old Glory" photo by Chris Stearns, 21mm Photography