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As I walked out in the streets of Laredo,
As I walked out in Laredo one day,
I spied a poor cowboy wrapped up in white linen,
Wrapped up in white linen as cold as the clay.
“I see by your outfit that you are a cowboy,”
These words he did say as I boldly stepped by.
“Come sit down beside me and hear my sad story;
I was shot in the breast and I know I must die.
“Get six jolly cowboys to carry my coffin;
Get six pretty maidens to bear up my pall.
Put bunches of roses all over my coffin,
Put roses to deaden the clods as they fall.
“Go bring me a cup, a cup of cold water,
To cool my parched lips,” the cowboy said;
Before I turned, the spirit had left him
And gone to its Giver, – the cowboy was dead.
We beat the drum slowly and played the fife lowly,
And bitterly wept as we bore him along;
For we all loved our comrade, so brave, young, and handsome,
We all loved our comrade although he’d done wrong.