LITTLE BRITCHES

I got the sulks this mornin' 'cause my Pa didn't let me know
They was gonna have the thing they call the Little Britches Rodeo,
When kids my age climb in the chutes to ride the bucking steers
And catch a case of bow-legs that lasts for 60 years

Well Pa's friend Buck he's standin' 'round so I swallows back my tears
He chuckles when he hears the words, "Son, wait just another year"
Then he says to Pa, "Remember back to your first time in the chutes ?"
Pa hangs his head and draws a Texas map in the sand there with his boot

Then he looks up proud and when he grins, I just can't hold a frownThen I think maybe I've won the match even though I've lost the round
Pa walks off towards the chutes to see the horse that he has drawn
And they say he's got the meanest bronc, the one called Short-Term Loan

Near the fence this mangy pinto stands; his eyes are rimmed with white
Pa stares back and he chaws a bluegrass stalk, and his jaw is clamped down tight
Then I know that he's a conjurin' as he chaws the bluegrass down
'Cause no sane cowboy feasts on fresh-picked herbs where horses are around
Then he leans down to the outlaw, whispers in his wooly ears:
"You buckin' broncs you only work 3 minutes every year.
I aim to sign your unemployment check with the fine point of my spurs,
And I aim to make my workin' year a few seconds longer than yours !"

Eight seconds on the cyclone, the rider he must doWell, I've seen my Pa stay up for twelve and I've seen him dumped in two
Now Short Term Loan's white eyeballs might mean anger, lust, or fear
Yeah, but his nostrils say, "IÕll waste the first vaquero that comes near""So you'd best take home your Daddy, son; my hooves don't fit this track."
Pa just grins and he grabs the beam and clumps down on his backThen the gate-man runs the big gate round; what's next I'm left to guess
From a hat up there in orbit between Austin and Juarez .

I can hear Pa's voice a-callin' as the cowboys give a cheer
"You buckin' broncs you only work 3 minutes every year
I aim to sign your unemployment check with the fine point of my spurs
And I aim to make my workin' year a few seconds longer than yours.

" Now in my chest some fool is marchin' round beatin' on a drum
My shoulder finds Buck's hand has got a Vise-Grip for a thumbThen the bell it rings, Pa's made his time, and the pick-up man swings round
But Short-Term veers sway and Pa's left hangin' upside-down

His trailin' spur has snagged the strap, a freakish accidentAnd Short-Term's tryin' to rub him off by runnin' 'long the fenceThe spur-points like a harrow-rake, they plow the horse's side
And the furrows spring up roses that seem to blind my eyes

Then the maddened pony turns his course and he pivots on his heel
My daddy rolls across the sand like a slow-unfoldin' wheelThen from far away a kid's voice comes, I've known but long forgot
In the sudden silence of the crowd it cries the words, "Git up!"

But a rodeo ain't a football game; I've heard the cowboys talkThe stretcher is an insult; best to let the poor man walk
Buck walks out in the arena like a feller on a stroll
Leans down and slaps Pa on his butt, half to comfort, half to scold

Oh so slow Pa gets up, and his silent lips they cuss
Lord, he don't look up as he limps to where his hat lies in the dust.
Oh I start for him, but Buck, he says, "Best let your Daddy be.
Son, an hour alone be better than the likes of you or me"

"But I don't reckon that your Pa'll be buyin' his own drinks for awhile.
" Then I feel my face a-tryin' like hell for the first curl of a smile.
And later, there's a party; folks stop by to say nice things (Lord, such nice things)
About this man they say I favor, who's starin' down at his drink
I can see his lips a-whisperin' as he leans down to his beer
"You buckin' broncs you only work 3 minutes every year
I aim to sign your unemployment check with the fine point of my spurs
And I aim to make my workin'-year a few seconds longer than yours -

Just a few seconds longer than yours."

Originally Performed by: Lawrence Hammond
Album: Presumed Lost
Lyrics By: Lawrence Hammond

ALL SONGS MUSIC AND LYRICS COPYRIGHT
BY LAWRENCE HAMMOND
DESERT JEWEL SONGS BMI