"Desert Pete" lyrics - THE KINGSTON TRIO

"Desert Pete"

I was travelin' West of Buckskin on my to a cattle run,
'cross a little cactus desert under a hard bargaining sun.
Thirsty down to my toenails, I stopped to rest me on a stump,
But I tell you I just couldn't believe it when I saw that water pump.

I took it to be a mirage at first. It'll fool a thirsty man.
Then I saw a note stuck in a bakin' powder can.
"This pump is old," the note began, "but she works. So give'er a try.
I put a new sucker washer in 'er. You may find the leather dry.

You've got to prime the pump. You must have faith and believe.
You've got to give of yourself 'fore you're worthy to receive.
Drink all the water you can hold. Wash your face to your feet.
Leave the bottle full for others. Thank you kindly, Desert Pete.

Yeah, you'll have to prime the pump, work that handle like there's a fire.
Under the rock you'll find some water left there in a bitter's jar.
Now there's just enough to prime it with, so don't you go drinkin' first.
Just pour it in and pump like mad and, buddy, you'll quench your thirst.


Well, I found the jar, and I tell you, nothin' was ever prettier to my eye
And I was tempted strong to drink it because that pump looked mighty dry,
But the note went on, "Have faith, my friend, there's water down below.
You've got to give to really get. I'm the one who ought to know."

So I poured in the jar and started pumpin' and I heard a beautiful sound
Of water bubblin' 'n' splashin' up out of that hole in the ground.
Then I took off my shoes and drunk my fill of that cold refreshin' treat.
Then I thanked the Lord, and I thanked the pump, and I thanked old Desert Pete.