A Cowboy’s Prayer by Charles Badger Clark

A Cowboy’s Prayer
(Written for Mother)

Oh Lord, I’ve never lived where churches grow.     
I love creation better as it stood 
That day You finished it so long ago     
And looked upon Your work and called it good. 
I know that others find You in the light     
That’s sifted down through tinted window panes, 
And yet I seem to feel You near tonight     
In this dim, quiet starlight on the plains. 
I thank You, Lord, that I am placed so well,     
That You have made my freedom so complete; 
That I’m no slave of whistle, clock or bell,     
Nor weak-eyed prisoner of wall and street. 
Just let me live my life as I’ve begun     
And give me work that’s open to the sky; 
Make me a pardner of the wind and sun,     
And I won’t ask a life that’s soft or high. 
Let me be easy on the man that’s down;     
Let me be square and generous with all. 
I’m careless sometimes, Lord, when I’m in town,     
But never let ‘em say I’m mean or small! 
Make me as big and open as the plains,     
As honest as the hawse between my knees, 
Clean as the wind that blows behind the rains,     
Free as the hawk that circles down the breeze! 
Forgive me, Lord, if sometimes I forget.     
You know about the reasons that are hid. 
You understand the things that gall and fret;     
You know me better than my mother did. 
Just keep an eye on all that’s done and said     
And right me, sometimes, when I turn aside, 
And guide me on the long, dim, trail ahead     
That stretches upward toward the Great Divide.
—Badger Clark

About Andrea R Huelsenbeck

Andrea R Huelsenbeck is a wife, a mother of five and a former elementary general music teacher. A freelance writer in the 1990s, her nonfiction articles and book reviews appeared in Raising Arizona Kids, Christian Library Journal, and other publications. She is currently working on a young adult mystical fantasy novel and a mystery.

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