Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Cowboy's Christmas Prayer

I was so excited to find this poem! It's something I enjoyed listening to on my mom's old Jimmy Dean Christmas album. I can still hear the scratchy sound of that record as I read the poem even now. As you may have begun to notice (*VBG*) I love all things cowboy and this is the perfect Christmas wish! I hope you enjoy it!

By S. Omar Barker (1894-1985) 

I ain't much good at prayin', and You may not know me, Lord- 
I ain't much seen in churches where they preach Thy Holy Word, 
But you may have observed me out here on the lonely plains, 
A-lookin' after cattle, feelin' thankful when it rains, 
Admirin' Thy great handiwork, the miracle of grass, 
Aware of Thy kind spirit in the way it comes to pass 
That hired men on horseback and the livestock we tend 
Can look up at the stars at night and know we've got a friend. 

So here's ol' Christmas comin' on, remindin' us again 
Of Him whose coming brought good will into the hearts of men. 
A cowboy ain't no preacher, Lord, but if You'll hear my prayer, 
I'll ask as good as we have got for all men everywhere. 
Don't let no hearts be bitter, Lord. 
Don't let no child be cold. 
Make easy beds for them that's sick and them that's weak and old. 
Let kindness bless the trail we ride, no matter what we're after, 
And sorter keep us on Your side, in tears as well as laughter. 

I've seen ol' cows a-starvin, and it ain't no happy sight: 
Please don't leave no one hungry, Lord, on thy good Christmas night- 
No man, no child, no woman, and no critter on four feet- 
I'll aim to do my best to help You find 'em chuck to eat. 

I'm just an ol’ cowpoke, Lord-I ain't got no business prayin'- 
But still I hope You'll ketch a word or two of what I'm sayin': 
We speak of Merry Christmas, Lord-I reckon you'll agree 
There ain't no Merry Christmas for a man if he ain't free. 
So one thing more I'll ask You, Lord: Just help us what you can 
To save some seeds of freedom for the future sons of man.!

Merry Christmas, Sweethearts and western lovers everywhere


  1. This is one of my favorite poems. It speaks from a cowboy's heart, doesn't it?

  2. I remember hearing this on TV as a kid. Great poem. Have a wonderful Christmas, Nic!

  3. Thanks, Paty! You, too.

    Marin, it really does, doesn't it?


  4. NICOLE--I've never seen nor heard this. It's wonderful, just the right thing for us Sweethearts. Thank you for sharing it--Celia

  5. Thanks for the wonderful poem, Nic. And I love the photo. :-)


  6. This is beautiful, Nic. I can picture a cowboy saying this prayer. Thank you for sharint it with us.

    Merry Christmas!

  7. Nicole,
    I just love this. I tried to e-mail you on the list about remembering Jimmy Dean, "BIG JOHN", etc. I don't think it ever came through. I really was glad to be able to listen to him recite this poem. Thanks so much for sharing this!

  8. I haven't heard this in a long, long time. Thanks for sharing.

  9. Squire Omar Barker of NM. , of the wall known Barker Family Brother of the Great conservationist Elliot S Barker. Pioneer family of the hard, but good times. Elliott book, "When the dogs Bark treed" is a keeper. In the field of coservation,,, a pioneer. True pioneers Squire later taught at New Mexico Highlands University.


Thank you for visiting Sweethearts of the West! We are very sad to require comment moderation now due to the actions of a few spam comments. Thank you for your patience.