Happy Mother’s Day: Merle Haggard’s “Mama Tried”

Happy Mother’s Day to all.

The first thing I remember knowin’
Was a lonesome whistle blownin’
And a young’uns dream of growin’ up to ride
On a freight train leavin’ town
Not knowin’ where I’m bound
And no one could change my mind
But Mama tried

One and only rebel child
From a family meek and mild
My Mama seemed to know what lay in store
Spite all my Sunday learnin’
Toward the bad I kept on turnin’
Till Mama couldn’t hold me any more

And I turned twenty-one in prison
Doin’ life with out parole
No one could steer me right
But mama tried, Mama tried
Mama tried to raise me better
But her pleading I denied
That leaves only me to blame
Cause Mama tried

Dear old Daddy, rest his soul
Left my Mom a heavy load
She tried so very hard to fill his shoes
Workin’ hours without rest
Wanted me to have the best
She tried to raise me right
But I refused

And I turned twenty-one in prison
Doin’ life with out parole
No one could steer me right
But mama tried, Mama tried
Mama tried to raise me better
But her pleading I denied
That leaves only me to blame
Cause Mama tried

I love you Mom.

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Posted in Grateful Dead, Music Appreciation and Analysis

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