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Tim Duggan: Music

The Western Tale of Romeo and Juliet

(Tim Duggan)
January, 2008
Tim Duggan
The Western Tale of Romeo and Juliet
In the town of Sioux City on the western frontier
Two households grew strong through the prosperous years
But the feuding between them caused trouble and death
For two star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet
Romeo’s father raised cattle and swine
And Juliet’s pa dealt in grain and moonshine
And he held a big party on a hot summer’s night
Where Juliet met with Romeo ’neath the balcony light
The coyotes were howling the night birds did cry
They held one another as if they would die
Cast aside family hatred it was love at first sight
And Juliet said to Romeo as she kissed him goodnight
My love is as wide as the prairie, my bounty is as boundless as the sea
And parting is such sweet sorrow my dear,
That tomorrow if you’ll arrange it I’ll exchange vows with thee

In a secret ceremony on the next afternoon
In the presence of a preacher they stood bride and groom
Then Juliet went home to prepare for the night
But in the streets of Sioux City Romeo found a fight
With a gun, Juliet’s cousin at Romeo took aim
But a friend stepped between them and the bullet found him,
“A plague on your houses!” he yelled as he died
Romeo stabbed the cousin then went to Juliet’s side
In Juliet’s chamber ‘neath the cover of night
They loved ‘til their skin felt the breath of daylight
They held one another as if they would die
Then Juliet said to Romeo as she kissed him goodbye
My love is as wide as the prairie, my bounty is as boundless as the sea
And parting is such awful sorrow my dear,
Get out of town quick, but please come back for me.

Just moments after Romeo left her to mourn
Juliet’s parents came into the room
Juliet, we have arranged for you to marry this week,
She cried NO! and her pa said, Go die in the street
All alone Juliet drank a quart of the shine
Fell into a coma, it seemed she had died
Romeo rushed back to her as soon as he heard
Killed himself by her bedside, moments later she stirred
And she said my love is as wide as the prairie
My bounty is as boundless as the sea
And pulling the knife from his pocket she cried
Dagger here is thy sheath, husband I follow thee.

In the town of Sioux City on the western frontier,
Two households endured many sorrowful years
Put their feuding behind them but they’ll never forget
Those two star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet.