Cisco Houston Web Site

The Songs He Sang

Deportees: Lyrics

As performed by Cisco Houston

Woody Guthrie

Appears on:
The crops are all in and the peaches are rotting,
The oranges are stacked in their creosote dumps;
They're flying them back to that Mexican border
To pay all their wages to wade back again

   Goodbye to my Juan, goodbye, Rosalita,
   Adios mi amigo, Jesus and Maria;
   You won't have a name when you ride the big airplane,
   And all they will call you will be "deportees"

My father's own father, he waded that river,
They took all the money he made in his life;
My brothers and sisters come working the fruit trees,
And they rode on the trucks till they took down and died.


Well some are illegal, and some are not wanted,
Our work contract's out and we've got to move on;
Six hundred miles to that Mexico border,
They chase us like outlaws, like rustlers, like thieves.


We died in your hills,and we died on your deserts,
We died in your valleys and died on your plains.
We died 'neath your trees and we died in your bushes,
Both sides of that river, we died just the same.


The sky plane caught fire over Los Gatos Canyon,
Like a fireball of lightning and shook all our hills,
Who are all these friends, all scattered like dry leaves?
The radio says, "They are just deportees"


Is this the best way we can grow our big orchards?
Is this the best way we can grow our good fruit?
To fall like dry leaves and rot on my topsoil
And be known by no name except "deportee"?


Of note:

A frequently performed Woody tune, no one has the right balance of sadness and anger that Cisco manages. Title listed as "Deportee (Plane Wreck at Los Gatos) on The Greatest Songs Of Woody Guthrie.

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