A group of jolly cowboys, discussing plans at ease
Says one, "I'll tell you somethin', boys, if you will listen please,
I'm an old cowpuncher, you see me dressed in rags,
I used to be a good one, boys, and I went on great big jags.
Now, I have got a home, boys, a good one, you all know,
Although I haven't seen it since very long ago,
I'm headed back to Dixie, once more to see them all
I'm goin' to see my mother when the work's all done this fall.
"Now, when I left my home, boys my mother for me cried
She begged me not to go, boys, for me she would have died
Mother's heart is aching, 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.
Riding in the darkness, so loudly did he shout
Trying hard to head them and turn the herd about
His saddle horse did stumble, and on him it did fall
The boy won't see his mother when the work's all done this fall.
"Send my mother my wages, boys, the wages I have earned,
I am so afraid, boys, my last steer I have turned -
I'm headed for a new range, I hear the Master's call,
I'll not see my mother when the work's all done this fall.
"Fred, you take my saddle, George, you take my bed,
Bill, you take my pistol, after I am dead-
Please think of me kindly, when you look upon them all.
I'll not see my mother, when the work's all done this fall. "
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
He'll not see his mother
When the work's all done this fall. "