Mudcat Café message #209603 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #20196   Message #209603
Posted By: Art Thieme
10-Apr-00 - 11:29 AM
Thread Name: Train Songs
Subject: Lyr Add: THE LAST RIDE^^
"Zack, The Mormon Engineer" is a classic---about an engineer on the Denver & Rio Grand R.R. that had a wife in every town along the way. Also, "The Hobo's Last Ride"--originally done with banjo by Buell Kazee (1928 ?)and then re-done with a new tune by Hank Snow (and by me too on Folk Legacy).

THE LAST RIDE

In the Dodge City Yards of the Santa Fe stood a freight made up for the east,
The engineer with his oil and waste stood groomin' the great iron beast,
Ten cars back in the murky dusk a boxcar door swung wide,
And a hobo hoisted his pal aboard to start on his last long ride.

The lantern swung, the freight pulled out and the engine it gathered speed,
The engineer pulled his throttle wide and clucked to his fiery steed.

Ten cars back in the murky dusk a hobo rolled a pill,
The flare of the match showed his partner's face stark, white and deathly still,
As ther train wheels clicked on the couplin' joints---a song for the rambler's ear,
The hobo talked to the still white form--his pal for many a year.

"It's a mighty long time we've rambled, Jack, with the luck of the men that roam,
The backdoor steps for a dining room and a boxcar for a home,
We dodged the bulls on the eastern route, the cops on the Chesapeake,
We rode the Leadville narrow gauge in the days of Cripple Creek,
We traveled down through sunny Cal. on the rails of the old S.P.,
And of all you had, through good or bad, half always belonged to me,
I made a promise to you, Jack, if I lived and you cashed in,
To take you back to that old churchyard and bury you there with your kin,
I'm keepin' my promise to you, Jack, and takin' you home on the fly,
It's a decent way for a 'bo to go home to the by-and-by.

"I knew that the fever had you Jack, and the doctor, he wouldn't come,
He was too busy with the wealthy folks to doctor a worn out bum."
As the train rolled over those ribbons of steel straight through to the east it sped,
The engineer in his high cab seat kept his eyes on the rails ahead,
Ten cars back in the murky dusk, a lonely hobo sighed,
For the days of old and his pal so cold who was taking his last long ride...

Art Thieme ----(this is probably in the DT but it's fun to go through the words another time.)