Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Baja Oklahoma

Anyone who knows me recognizes my pride in being Texan (5th generation - thank you very much) and my interest in all things Texas. Dan Jenkins (from Ft. Worth) is a nationally known sportswriter and novelist of some repute who coincidentally wrote Baja Oklahoma back in 1981. It's not one of his more well known efforts, though it was made into a movie for television. In the movie, Lesley Ann Warren plays the role of the heroine Juanita Hutchins. She's an aspiring country songwriter. The movie is a bit of a fluff piece and  never succeeded  in the mainstream, though it does have somewhat of a cult following in other countries. I love the song Baja Oklahoma and accidentally ran across Jenkin's lyrics in a paperback copy of mine just today. Thought they were worth sharing because I don't know if I've ever read or heard a better compilation of what Texas really means to me. Hope all y'all enjoy them as much as I do.

             Baja Oklahoma
It’s in the schoolyards on the faces
Of the children playing games.
It’s a pasture looking greener
In the spring and summer rains.
It’s a highway going nowhere
As far as you can see.
It’s a cowboy singing songs
About his craving to be free.
It’s a river flowing gently
Through an older part of town.
It’s a sky that’s all around you
Touching every patch of ground.
It’s a prairie where the wind
Can ever tell which way to blow.
It’s our heroes getting taller
In that tiny Alamo.
It’s the laughter you can carry
Through the years that turn you old.
It’s “Baja Oklahoma,”
But it’s Texas in your soul!

It’s a skyline swiftly rising
And poking at a star.
It’s a thicket’s tangled branches
Turning daylight into dark.
It’s the breeze along the beaches
Where the gulf is at your feet.
It’s a lonely town imprisoned
By the dust and the mesquite.
It’s a drive across the border
To the music and the sin.
It’s the blue that’s in a norther

It’s football games to win.
It’s a roundup stirring mem’ries
Of the rough and tumble days.
It’s a detour off the freeway
To see where you were raised.
It’s the laughter you can carry
Through the years that turn you old.
It’s “Baja Oklahoma,”
But it’s Texas in your soul!

                                     - Dan Jenkins



At 8:25 PM, Anonymous Bruce Latimer said...

A friend gave me the HBO he'd copied and I've been a fan ever since. The tune (like Texas) sticks in the mind and pops up humming and singing (off key) a few bars. I had no luck findimg the lyris until now. My thanks to you.

Yes, it is too bad the USA did not make it a bugger hit that it deserved to be. Yes, it is a bit of "a corny shit" as Suzie say in the movie, but still it does warm the heart in the end. Better that the other s..t that passes for entertainment today. Eh?
Jax, Fla


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