Lyrics From, “Luke the Drifter”


These are merely words I think all of society needs to hear, all ethnicities, and all religions too.  The words are divine in their folksy wisdom.  Sure you can read them but to have the full emotional experience one needs to hear the words sung by, Hank Williams aka, Luke the Drifter.  The first one (there are fourteen) of the troubadour style:  Pictures from Life’s Other Side…

Listen on Spotify while you read.
In the world’s mighty gallery of pictures

And the Dove brings peace and a serenity...
And the Dove brings peace and a serenity…

Hang the scenes that are painted from life
There’s pictures of love and of passion
And there’s pictures of peace and of strife

Beautiful youth...
Beautiful youth…

There hang pictures of youth and of beauty
Of old age and the blushing young bride
They all hang on the wall but the saddest of all
Are the pictures from life’s other side

Just a picture from life’s other side
Someone has fell by the way
A life has gone out with the tide
That might have been happy some day

There’s a poor old mother at home
She’s watching and waiting alone
Just longin’ to hear from a loved one so dear

The worst is yet to come...
The worst is yet to come…

It’s just a picture from life’s other side

The first scene is that of a gambler
Who had lost all his money at play
And he draws his dead mother’s ring from his finger
That she wore long ago on her wedding day

It’s his last earthly treasure but he stakes it
And he bows his head that his shame, he might hide
But when they lifted his head, they found he was dead
That’s just a picture from life’s other side

Now the last scene is that by the river
Of a heartbroken mother and babe

As the harbor lights shine and they shimmer
On an outcast whom no-one will save

And yet she was once a true woman
She was somebody’s darlin’ and pride
God, help her, she leaps for there’s no-one to weep
It’s just a picture from life’s other side

I trust you enjoyed reading those words and some even listening to them and others had the enjoyment of both.

 

The next is a song very dear to me and it’s called, Men With Broken Hearts:

 You will meet many just like me

Upon life’s busy street
With shoulders stooped and heads bowed low
And eyes that stare in defeat

For souls that live within the past

Heartbroken man contemplating, "What will I do now?"
Heartbroken man contemplating, “What will I do now?”

Where sorrow plays all parts
For a living death is all thats left
For men with broken hearts

You have no right to be the judge
To criticize and condemn
Just think but for the grace of God
It would be you instead of him

One careless step, or a thoughtless deed
And then the misery starts
And to those who weep death comes cheap
These men with broken hearts

Oh, so humble you should be
When they come passing by

Humble man and child...
Humble man and child…

For its written that the greatest of men
Never get to big to cry

Some lose faith in love and life
When sorrow shoots her darts
And with hope all gone, they walk alone
These men with broken hearts

You’ve never walked in that man’s shoes

Or saw things through his eyes

Or stood and watched with helpless hands

While the heart inside you dies

Some were paupers, some were kings
And some were masters of the arts
But in their shame they’re all the same
These men with broken hearts

Life sometimes can be so cruel
That a heart will pray for death
God why must these living dead
Know pain with every breath?

So help your brother along the road
No matter where he starts
For the God that made you, made them too
These men with broken hearts

That’s all for today folks because I am taking my daughter on a little trip, be back this evening…

 

Why did this happen, or why is s/he like that, oh, “Help Me Understand…”

A little girl prayed at the close of the day

The photo speaks for itself...
The photo speaks for itself…

‘Cause her daddy had gone far away
On her little face, was a look of despair
I stood there and listened and I heard this prayer

My momma says daddy has brought us to shame
And I’m never no more to mention his name
Lord, take me and lead me and hold to my hand
Oh, Heavenly Father help me understand

You know, friends
I wonder how many homes are broken tonight
And just how many tears are shed

"Teach your children well."
“Teach your children well.”

By some little word of anger
That never should have been said

I’d like to tell you a story
Of a family I once knew
We’ll call them Mary and William
And their little daughter Sue

Now Mary was just a plain mother
And Bill, he was a usual dad
And they had their little family quarrels
Like everybody else but neither one really got mad

Then one day something happened
It was nothing of course
But one word led to another
And the last word led to a divorce

Now here were two grown up people
Who failed to use common sense
They strengthened their own selfish pride
At little Sue’s expense

You know she didn’t ask to be brought to this world
To drift from pillar to post
But a divorce never stops to consider
The ones it hurts the most

There’d be a lot more honest loving
In this wicked ole world today
If just a few parted parents
Could hear little Sue say

Take me and lead me and hold to my hand
Oh, Heavenly Father, help me understand

Just one more drink, “Too Many Parties and Too Many Pals, “

Too many parties and too many pals

Will break your heart someday

Too many boyfriends and sociable sounds

Will drive your sweetheart away

Gentlemen of the jury, the judge’s speech began
The scene was a crowded courtroom and the judge a stern old man
This prisoner here before you is a social enemy
A lady of the evening and you know the penalty

Her eyes reflect the nightlife
Her cheeks are red with paint
But I knew her mother, gentlemen
Why her mother was a saint

Now, I know that she’s not like her
And yet she might have been
If it hadn’t been for pettin’ parties

Too many parties
Too many parties

Cigarettes and gin

We took the night life off the streets
And brought it in our own homes
While girls beguiled with lipstick
[Incomprehensible] saxophones

We opened up the underworld
To the ones we loved so well
So, tell me gentlemen
Is it right to send her to a cell?

If she drinks well you taught her
And if she smokes you showed her how
So gentlemen, do you think it’s right
To go and condemn her now?

And when you’re in that jury room
Just remember there and then
That for every fallen woman
Why there’s a hundred fallen men

And before you render a verdict
On what this girl has done
Just remember there’s a man to blame
And that man might be your son

Now, gentlemen that’s my story
My testimony stands
This girl is my own daughter
And the case is in your hands

Those Broadway roses and [Incomprehensible] sounds
Had too many parties and too many pals

 

What did you want honey…“Please Make Up Your Mind,”

When I agree with you baby it makes you mad
And when I don’t it makes you sad
When I argue back you pack and leave
And when I don’t you pout in grieve

There just ain’t nobody knows what I go through
Will you please make up your mind what you want me to do?

You say get out and I’d better stay gone
Then you have a big policeman drag me back home
You holler good and loud, put him in the calaboose
Then you cry and ask the judge won’t you please turn him loose?

The good Lord only knows what I go through
Will you please make up your mind what you want me to do?

My life with you baby has been one hard knock
Lord my head looks like an old chop block
And I’ll tell you right now, honey, that ain’t all
You done kicked me till I feel like a used football

There just ain’t nobody knows what I go through
Will you please make up your mind what you want me to do?

You knock me down and then you pick me up
Honey, do you have to love so doggone rough?
I wish to my soul you’d slow down the pace
‘Cause I tell you right now the hide’s gettin’ scarce

There just ain’t nobody knows what I go through
Will you please make up your mind what you want me to do?

Why when I married you you were such a meek little thing
But honey among tigers you’d be queen
If a poor little rabbit had you on his side
Every hound in the country would crawl off and hide

There just ain’t nobody knows what I go through
Would you please make up your mind
What in the confounded cat hair do you want me to do?

 

 

Where do I go from here because, “I’ve Been Down That Road Before…”

Now friend if you’ll just listen to me
You’ll get some good hard earned advice
I don’t aim to meddle in your business
Just tryin’ to save you an awful price.

Now you see these teeth I ain’t got
And these knots on my bald head
I’ll guarantee you boys I didn’t get them
There just lyin’ at home in the bed.

Now take the smart alec in any town
Of him folks want no part
He acts like his head was only made
Just to hold his ears apart.

Now he might act like what I’m ’bout to say
And my words may make him sore
But I’m just tryin’ to be thankful
‘Cause I’ve been down that road before.

To bully folks and play mean tricks
Was once my pride and joy
Till one day I was toted home
And mama didn’t know her little boy.

My head was swelled up so doggone big
I couldn’t get it through my front door
Now I ain’t just talkin’ to hear myself
‘Cause I’ve been down that road before.

A little fellow ’bout my size
Got tired of being pushed about
So he went to work and when he got thru
He’d knocked every one of my teeth out.

One time too many I’d rubbed him wrong
And he evened up the score
Now that’s what happens when you get too big for your britches
And I’ve been down that road before.

Now when you get to thinkin’ you’re really smart
There’s always somebody smarter than you
And no matter how much you boast and brag
You can still learn a thing or two.

Go get you some treatments just like I’ve had
And you won’t hanker for more
I really learned the meaning of living and loving
I’ve been down that road before.

Now the man that walks this rocky road
Usually gets just what he deserves
‘Cause he’s just a helpless servant
To a master that he serves.

Now I’ve learned to slow my temper down
And not to pick no scraps no more
Boys it’s a lot easier on the head and eyes
I’ve been down that road before…

 

 

Lest you break something – “Be Careful of Stones That You Throw…”

A tongue can accuse and carry bad news
The seeds of distrust it will sow
But unless you’ve made no mistakes in your life
Be careful of stones that you throw

A neighbor was passing my garden
One time, she stopped and I knew right away
That it was gossip not flowers she had on her mind
And this is what I heard my neighbor say

“That bad girl down the street should be run from our midst
She drinks and she talks quite a lot
She knows not to speak to me or my child”
My neighbor then smiled and I thought

A tongue can accuse and carry bad news
The seeds of distrust it will sow
But unless you’ve made no mistakes in your life
Be careful of stones that you throw

A car speeded by and the screaming of brakes
A sound that made my blood chill
For my neighbor’s one child had been pulled from the path
And saved by a girl lying still

The child was unhurt and my neighbor cried out
“Oh who was that brave girl so sweet?”
I covered the crushed broken body and said
The bad girl who lived down the street

A tongue can accuse and carry bad news
The seeds of distrust it will sow
But unless you’ve made no mistakes in your life
Be careful of stones that you throw

 

I miss her and, “I Dreamed about Mama Last Night…”

I’ve just been to heaven with someone so true
I dreamed about mama last night
She read me the Bible like she used to do
I dreamed about mama last night.

She never close her eyes to sleep till we were all in bed
And on party nights when we come home she often sat and read
We little thought about it then for we were young and gay
Just how much mama worried when we children were away.

We only knew she never slept when we were out at night
That she waited just to know that we’d all come home alright
Why sometimes when we’d stay away till one or two or three
It seemed to us that mama heard the turnin’ of the key.

For always when we’d step aside she’d call and we’d reply
But we were all too young back then to understand the reason why
Until the last one had returned she’d always keep a light
For mama couldn’t sleep until she kissed us all goodnight.

She had to know that we were safe before she went to rest
She seemed to fear that the world might harm
The ones that she loved the best
And once she told me when you’re grown to women and to men
Perhaps I’ll sleep the whole night through I may be different then.

And so it seemed that night and day we knew a mother’s care
That always when we got back home we’d find her waitin’ there
Then came the night that we were called together round her bed
The children’re all with you now the kindly doctor said.

And in her eyes the gleam again that old time tender light
That told that she’s just been waitin’ to know that we were alright
She smiled that old familiar smile and prayed to God to keep
Her children safe from harm throughout the years tand then she went to sleep.

My dream is a treasure that I’ll always keep
I dreamed about mama last night…

 

We all end up at, “The Funeral…”

I was walking in Savannah past a church decayed and dim
When slowly through the window came a plaintive funeral hymn
And my sympathy awakened and a wonder quickly grew
Till I found myself envired in a little colored pew.

Out front a colored couple sat in sorrow nearly wild
On the altar was a casket and in the casket was a child
I could picture him while livin’ curly hair protuding lips
I’d seen perhaps a thousand in my hurried southern trips.

Rose a sad old colored preacher from his little wooden desk
With a manner sorta awkward and countenance grotesque
The simplicity and shrewdness in his Eithopian face
Showed the wisdom and ignorance of a crushed undying race.

And he said now don’t be weeping for this pretty bit of clay
For the little boy who lived there has done gone and run away
He was doin’ very finely and he appreciates your love
But his shore ’nuff father wanted him in the big house up above.

The Lord didn’t give you that baby by no hundred thousand miles
He just thought you need some sunshine and he lent it for awhile
And he let you keep and love it till your hearts were bigger grown
And these silver tears you’re sheddin’ now is just interest on the loan.

Just think, my poor dear mourners creepin’ along on sorrows life’s way
What a blessed picnic this here baby got today
Your good fathers and good mothers crowd the little fellow round
In the angel’s tender garden of the big plantation ground.

And his eyes they brightly sparkle at the pretty things he viewed
But a tear came, and he whispered I want my parents too
But then the angel’s chief musicians teach that little boy a song
Says if only they be faithful they’ll soon be comin’ along.

So my poor detached mourners let your hearts with Jesus rest
And don’t go to criticizin’ the one what knows the best
He has give us many comforts, he’s got the right to take away
To the Lord be praised in glory forever, let us pray…

 

I’ll soon follow you…   “Beyond the Sunset…”

Should you go first and I remain to walk the road alone
I’ll live in mem’ry’s garden dear with happy days we’ve known
In spring I’ll wait for roses red when fades the lilacs bloom
And in early fall when brown leaves fall I’ll catch a glimpse of you.

Should you go first and I remain for battles to be fought
Each thing you’ve touched along the way will be a hallowed spot
I’ll hear your voice I’ll see your smile though blindly I may grope
The mem’ry of your helping hand will buoy me on with hope.

(Sang)
Beyond the sunset, oh, blissful morning
When with our Saviour heaven is begun
Earth’s toiling ended, oh, glorious dawning
Beyond the sunset when day is done.

(Spoken)
Should you go first and I remain to finish with the scroll
No lessening shadows shall ever creep in to make this life seem droll
We’ve known so much of happiness we’ve had our cup of joy
And memory is one gift of God that death cannot destroy.

I want to know each step you take that I may walk the same
For someday down that lonely road you’ll hear me call your name
Should you go first and I remain one thing I’ll have you do
Walk slowly down that long, long path, for soon I’ll follow you.

(Sang)
In that fair homeland we’ll know no parting
Beyond the sunset for evermore…

 

When will…“Just Waitin’… “

The old maid’s waitin’ for leap year to come
The crooner’s just waitin’ to sing
The old cow’s standin’ by the Bull Durham sign
Just a-waitin’ for the grass to turn green.

The bar-fly’s waitin’ for an easy mark
‘N’ the hitch-hiker’s waitin’ for a ride
The life-termer’s waitin’ for a prison break
The beachcomber’s waitin’ for the tide.

Farmer’s daughter’s waitin’ for the salesman
To take her into town
The city slicker’s waitin’ for the country boy
To lay all his money down.

You know ev’rything comes to a standstill
Nothin’ seems to make a turn
Worm must be waitin’ for the early bird
I guess the early bird’s waitin’ for the worm.

Nobody wants to do nothin’
Just Waitin’ to get a finger in the pie
Waitin’ for a call from a big quiz show
Or hopin’ and a-waitin’ for some rich uncle to die.

Katy, she’s waitin’ at the garden gate
The moonshiner’s waitin’ at the still
‘N’ the gambler’s still waitin’ for that Ace in the hole
I guess Jack’s still waitin’ for Jill.

Ev’rybody’s waitin’ for som’thin’
Nothing seems to turn out right
‘Cause the night shift’s waitin’ for mornin’
And the burglar Just Waitin’ for night.

The congregation’s waitin’ for the preacher
Preacher just waitin’ for the groom
The groom’s just waitin’ for the June bride
And the bride’s just waitin’ for June.

Sunflow’rs waitin’ for the sunshine
Violets just waitin’ for dew
Bees just waitin’ for honey
And, honey, I’m just waitin’ for you…

The attitude to have?  Don’t worry ’bout nothin’ cause, “Everything’s Okay…”  

I went to the country just the other day
To see my Uncle Bill and sorta pass the time away
I asked him how he’d been since las’, I’d passed his way
He rubbed his chin, here’s what he had to say.

“My wife’s been sick the young’ns, too
And I’m durn near down with the flu
The cow’s gone dry and them hens won’t lay
But we’re still a-livin’ so everything’s okay.

The hogs took the cholera and they’ve all done died
The bees got mad and they left the hive
The weevils got the corn and the rain rotted the hay
But we’re still a-livin’ so everything’s okay.

The porch rotted down, that’s more expense
The durned old mule, he tore down the fence
The mortgage is due and I can’t pay
But we’re still a-livin’ so everything’s okay.

The cow broke in the field and eat up the beans
The durn rabbits they got the turnip greens
And my Ma-in-law just moved in to stay
But we’re still a-livin’ so everything’s okay.

My land’s so poor, so hard and “yeller”
You have to set on a sack of fetilizer to raise an “umbreller”
And it rains out here nearly ever’day
But we’re still a-livin’ so everthing’s okay.

The well’s gone dry and I have to tote the water
Up from the spring about a mile and a quarter
My helper, he quit for the lack of pay
But we’re still a-livin’ so everything’s okay.

The house it leaks, it needs a new top
When it rains it wets ever’thing we got
The chimney fell down just yesterday
But we’re still a-livin’ so everything’s okay.

The corn meals gone and the meat’s run out
Got nothin’ to kill to put in the smokehouse
The preacher’s comin’ Sunday to spend the day
But we’re still a-livin’ so everything’s okay.

The canned stuff’s spoiled else the jar’s got broke
And all we got left is one old Billy goat
We’re gonna have a new baby about the first of May
But we’re still a-livin’ so everything’s okay.

My crop it rotted in the ground
I asked for another loan but the banker turned me down
But we’re still a-livin’ and we’re prayin’ for better days
So after all, ever’thing’s in purty good shape…”

 

My grandson, Jake’s, favorite Hank William’s tune…

I’m just fine most of the time but then, “Ramblin’ Man,” hits…

I can settle down and be doin’ just fine
‘Til I hear an old train rollin’ down the line
Then I hurry straight home and pack
And if I didn’t go, I believe I’d blow my stack
I love you baby, but you gotta understand
When the Lord made me, He made a ramblin’ man.

Some folks might say that I’m no good
That I wouldn’t settle down if I could
But when that open road starts to callin’ me
There’s somethin’ o’er the hill that I gotta see
Sometimes it’s hard but you gotta understand
When the Lord made me, He made a ramblin’ man.

I love to see the towns a-passin’ by
And to ride these rails ‘neath God’s blue sky
Let me travel this land from the mountains to the sea
‘Cause that’s the life I believe He meant for me
And when I’m gone and at my grave you stand
Just say God called home your ramblin’ man…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Steve Richie

Hi folks, Two lives in one lifetime. The first me, lived to age thirty-four. That Steve was overly confident and oozing with pride. Then, on a record heat-setting day (107º) here in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota and western Wisconsin, a one car near-fatal wreck left me in a two-month long coma. I emerged much as I was before minus certain physical capabilities, but my mind seemed mostly in tact. The crash and its effects did not change me (I emerged a happy individual) but the deeds perpetrated against me in the ensuing months from my wife of sixteen years scared and humbled me as I was dragged down with nothing left by my wife who now had guardianship over all of our accounts. And neither would she allow me to see our kids. She took everything out of, "Our" names and changed them to her name only; then would not allow me to our home and divorced me. I was angry, but no more. I spent half of 1988 and more than half of 1989 in hospitals, nursing homes and a three month stint at a head-injury rehab center where I was being taught how to re-enter society as this different person, that I didn't know. I was not able to return to my previous line of work, a self-employed decorator, you know, painting and paperhanging. It was a physical job which required much dexterity, finesse, and a good grasp of numbers. I returned to the beginning, school, but on a community college level. One of the instructor's liked my writing and I began focusing my attention on that. I attended classes at, "The Loft," A Place for Writers in Minneapolis. While there, a classmate of mine was having her friend from New York, a CBS executive, to her home for the holidays and asked me if she could do a critique on a couple chapters of a book I was writing, "A Day I'll Never Remember" and I obliged. When she returned to class the following Monday she told me that the exec wanted a ten-page synopsis of the book for a possible movie; I was excited. After obliging for that also, I never saw or heard from her or the guy from CBS. Next thing I knew I was watching a movie called, "Regarding Henry" starring Harrison Ford and the scenes of therapy were exactly like what I went through and had written about. Regarding Henry - could've been my story except that, "Henry" got his head injury from a gunshot and his wife stayed with him throughout the ordeal. Coincidence I'm sure, though, the therapy scenes entailed what I described in the book so I always wondered..... My hope, my dream is to bolster our income for my daughter and for myself. I am and have been raising this beautiful, talented little girl who was diagnosed with autism at age two, since 2006 singlehandedly. I divorced her mother the same year following complaints that I spent too much time with our daughter. However, Stephanie began school with no need for special education. She has been reading since age four and understanding what she'd read. Stephanie maintains straight "A's" on her report card, has published two books (through school) and has been selected as an, "Honors" student for seventh grade English. My ex moved to New York to be closer to her sister and has been remarried now for a number of years. Well, that's only a snippet of my sixty-one years and I would like to thank you for reading, thank you.

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