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Murray Boal - Bud's Sawmill - Lyrics


Good Rain

By the riverside
In a field of fertile ground
Sweet clover as a cover crop
That I’m gonna plow down
When the summer comes 
And the wind is hot and dry
I’ll be watching the clouds 
Building up in the summer sky

     It’s a good rain in a dry spell
     Like a cool drink from a spring fed well
     In the plowed ground, I’m gonna plant my seed
     You know a good rain is just what I need

Big city in a heat wave
Waiting by the railroad track
Been away so long
Now it feels like I’m never going back
There’s a train at the station
It’s a’leaving this dusty town
You’re gonna feel the breeze blowing
Now that you’re homeward bound

CH

In the southern sky
I can see a double rainbow
I’m standing by the fenceline
And I’m watching the grain field grow
On the gravel road
You can smell the summer rain
Walk along the riverside
It’s good to be home again

CH


Sugarcane Hall

Henry Grinder played the fiddle
Almost every night and day
He said ‘go and get your guitar son 
And a fiddle tune we’ll play’
We could do down yonder 
And brother that’s not all
There’s a dance at the Sugarcane hall

The place was dark and dusty 
When they unlocked the doors
Swept all the dirt off of 
This worn out dance floor
Put a couple benches
Up against the wall
There’s a dance at the Sugarcane hall

     They like to have a good time on the Sugarcane reserve
     Down the highway south of deadmans curve
     And when you hear the fiddle round about nightfall
     There’s a dance at the Sugarcane hall

Big Chuck is on the dance floor
He stands six foot three 
Quite a scary sight
For a city boy like me
He looks a little angry
I hope there’s not a brawl
There’s a dance at the Sugarcane hall

CH

We played every fiddle tune
I’d learned at Sugarcane
And when we played the last one 
We played them all again
Big Chuck he’s smiling 
He’s really not mean at all
There’s a dance at the Sugarcane hall

CH

And when the dancing’s over 
Everybody’s gone
Blisters on my fingers
I couldn’t another song
Henry Grinder sat and played 
One more old time waltz
He said ‘pick up that guitar 
Come on and play a few more bars’

CH


Chilcotin Moon

The evening sun touches the tops of the trees
You can smell the hay drying in the warm summer breeze
When the long day is over and the horses are fed
They’ll be a Chilcotin moon shining over my head

This meadow is like an ocean the swamp grass like waves
The overshot stacker is like a ship in the haze
We’re making hay in the morning tonight the dew falls
And the Chilcotin moon watches over it all

     Chilcotin moon you cast a long shadow
     Down the big river to the sea
     Chilcotin moon you shine on the grasslands
     Where the horses are gonna always run free
     Chilcotin moon looking down on this meadow
     Listen to the cry of the loons
     You light up the way and it’s bright as the day
     Under the Chilcotin moon

There’s spirits in the twilight up on the haystack
There’s voices in the walls of this old sod roofed shack
There’s acres of hay laying on the meadow
With the Chilcotin moon shining down the windrows

CH

It’s late in the evening I lay in my bed
The sound of a mower echoes in my head
And then I’m out on the hayfield hitching up the team
And the Chilcotin moon even lights up my dreams

CH


Frank’s Stories

Winter in the canyon 
Got snowed in in Boston Bar
Tried to plow the highway
But they didn’t get too far
Had to park their semi trucks
And wait for the road to clear
Three days and nights they stayed there
Till the bar ran out of beer

He drove truck up the Nechako
When they built the Kenny Dam
He was eating in the mess hall
There were stacks of steaks and ham
He had a trailer load of soda pop 
That he’d drop along the way
He knew every little truck stop
On that Yellowhead highway

     Frank he drove that semi truck
     It must have been twenty-five years
     That’s miles and miles of pavement
     And a whole lot of changing gears
     Frank he knew that highway
     Just like an old old friend
     And you know that there’s one of Frank’s stories
     Around most every bend

Driving tandem from Vancouver
Through the night they’re Prince George bound
Switching trailers in the morning
And they make their turn around
Stop for coffee down in Red Rock
Where the mighty Fraser flows
On down the Cariboo Highway
When it was still a gravel road

CH

Ten years since Franks retired now
His trucking days are done
He’s seen a lot of changes
Since his driving days begun
I like to take a ride with him
When he’s out for a summer drive
Cause when Frank starts telling you stories
This old highway comes alive

CH


Steady and Strong

I’m so weak
And you’re so strong
When I don’t want to go
You say come on
You pick me up
When I’ve fallen down
And when I lose my way
You’re my lost and found

You’re almost always right
I’m often wrong
I start a fight 
You make us get along
I’m a little lazy
You like to get things done
When I’m going crazy
You’re the steady one

     Steady and strong on an island
     On a sea of trouble and pain
     Steady and strong when you’re standing
     In the eye of a hurricane
     Steady and strong

I wake up angry
With the world I see
You help me find out
Just what’s a’bothering me
I know that I’m stubborn
I don’t have to tell you
Come to think about it
You’re kind of stubborn too

CH

We can sail upon the ocean
And ride the rolling sea
And maybe stay out on the island
Where it’s only you and me
The wind might blow
You know you’ll always be

CH


Travelling On

Do I come from the ashes of the past generation
Who have walked on this road long ago
Am I just a reflection of the places I’m passing
In the side window

Driving my car in an old neighbourhood
Climb every tree like I said that I would
Looking for you but everything’s gone
On the road that I’m travelling on
That’s the road that I’m travelling on

Do I follow the lines on the highway before me
That lay like an unbroken chain
Can I change my direction at the next intersection
There’s a turning lane

Stopped at the top of the street where you lived
Sat on the bench in the park like we did
There’s lights on the mountain
It’s where I am drawn
On the road that I’m travelling on

     Travelling on
     Travelling on
     Only passing through here
     On the road that I’m travelling on

The scenery changes
It’s always the same
Like you’re waiting at the crossroads
But the answer never came

Am I watching the road disappearing behind me
Looking back on the lights changing red
Is it just an illusion that the path that I’m choosing
Is on the road up ahead

Drove to the valley but the roads are all blocked
Sleep in the back but the doors are all locked
John found the keys it was just before dawn
On the road that I’m travelling on

CH


River on the Rise

Winter turns to breakup
It’s hot for the time of year
The ice is flowing early 
The river’s almost clear
Snow up in the mountains
Like they’ve never seen before 
They’ll be flooding in the valley
For the folks along the shore

     The river keeps arising
     It is up again today
     There is rain on the horizon
     It’s gonna wash us all away
     You can’t stop the water
     No matter how hard you try
     You better move to higher ground boys
     The rivers on the rise

It rained for most of April
And in May the river rose
They told the people to move away
But one family wouldn’t go
Five generations 
Had they heard the river roar
But never had they ever left there 
House upon the shore

CH

They said that they were crazy
Can’t you see you’re gonna drown
But they were a stubborn family
With roots deep in the ground

The water broke the riverbank
Washing away the shore
Up to the family’s house 
The water was lapping at their door
But like the tides a’changing
The water turned around
Everybody said the family 
Stared the river down

CH


Buds Sawmill

If you go west from the Fraser
To the top of six mile hill
There’s a line of antique tractors
Parked beside an old sawmill
You can watch the carriage rolling
You can hear the headsaw whine
This mills be cutting lumber since nineteen forty-nine

There’s a man up on the platform
Polished smooth beneath his feet
He’s a’squaring up a timber
Bud’s lumber can’t be beat
So if you’re driving out to Nazko 
And you’ve got some time to kill
You better stop and have a visit when you’re passing Bud’s sawmill

     The big saw turning around
     Cutting so straight and true
     You hear that lonesome sound 
     When he’s running another log through
     And when he starts the engine
     Making the time stand still
     You see the last of a generation
     When you stop at Bud’s sawmill

If you go behind the millsite
It’s really not that far
It’s kinda like you’re back in time
With all the old trucks and cars
There’s every make and model
Since Bud was just a kid
He likes to keep things runnin’ good just like his old man did

CH

There is a light on in the window
Late into the night
He’s got a car out in his workshop
That he is bringing back to life
And on almost every Sunday
He shuts the sawmill down
He gives that car a wax and shine and drives his wife to town

CH


Finally Ran

Why do you drink so much
Can’t you see what you’ve done 
The years you’ve been drinking
No she didn’t run
Now you hit bottom 
And you’re looking for her hand
She got tired of waiting
She finally ran

     Running for shelter
     Stuck in the driving rain
     Always told her the weather would change
     Running for shelter
     Why didn’t you understand
     You couldn’t hold her 
     She finally ran

I know that it’s not easy
When you’re out of control
The life that you’ve been leading
Has taking its toll
You know she tried to help you
She did every thing she can
Every body’s got a breaking point
She finally ran

CH

How many times did you say that you were sorry 
Walking the line you know she’s heard it before
How many times did you tell her that you loved her
You’re gonna find that she won’t listen no more
Now she’s walking out the door

CH


Train Song

I got a railroad that’s running through my mind

First stop along the line on this railroad in my mind
There’s a place where the sun it always shines
It’s a pretty little town where nobody’s ever down
And you can buy a ticket glory bound
The people that you see become anything they want to be
And they can ride my railroad for free

     I got a railroad running through my mind
     Sometimes the train don’t come at all
     Sometimes it just don’t stop
     Sometimes the lonesome freight train
     Can’t make it to the top
     Of this railroad that’s running through my mind

Second stop along the track the station’s painted black
There’s row on row of lonely run down shacks
It’s where the cold wind blows and all the broken people go
The days are dark and nothing ever grows
It’s a city built on pain and it doesn’t have a name
You always stop there when you ride my downbound train

CH

There’s a place along the way where I wish that I could stay
Somewhere between the first and second stop
Where it never rains all day and you can say what you want to say
This old freight train is gonna make it to the top

CH


Four Walls

Lonely again on the highway tonight
Faces appear in the passing headlight
Maybe they said that it’s all in your head
Maybe it’s them and they blame you instead
They blame you instead

     When the door closes behind you
     In the room at the end of the hall
     The floor and the ceiling confine you
     And all that you’ve got is four walls
     There’s only four walls

The weather is changing feel the storm grow
Your branches are swinging hear the wind blow
You’re down on the street out all alone
You’re walking the side roads you never get home
You never get home

CH

You’re up in the sky miles from the ground
You can’t find a way to get down
They’re locking the door in the hallway tonight
It seems like a dream but it’s never quite right
It’s never quite right

CH


Paddle Away

Things go wrong
It’s a changing world
Life goes on come what may
You can’t go back 
The past is past
I wish I could paddle away

Clouds hang low 
On the mountain side
November skies are shades of gray
The cold wind blows 
The river ice flows
I wish I could paddle away

Paddle away
Leave your troubles behind you
Paddle away
To the distant shore
When the new day breaks on the Bowron Lakes
I wish I could paddle away

This mountain lake 
Is as smooth as glass
I’ll take my boat up there someday
In the morning light
I’ll cut through it like a knife
I wish I could paddle away.

CH

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