Page 1: A little girl and her father are outside on a sunny day, and he assists her as she rides her (bike, Page 2; horse, Page 3).
Page 2: He hangs onto the seat as she wobbles and weaves, but eventually she gains control of the bike and tells him that she can move forward on her own. (Go to Page 4)
Page 3: Although he tries his darndest, she still manages to fall quite a few times. But in his infinite wisdom, he tells her not to spill her tears, for she will rise above these challenges and gain a steely resolve as her reward. (Go to Page 4)
Page 4: Eventually she grows up and meets a strapping young man and they choose to marry and have a fairytale wedding. Then, they experience (happiness everlasting, Page 5; sadness and struggle, page 6).
Page 5: The grown woman now recognizes that it’s time for her to be independent, but still understands the inherent melancholy that her father faces in having to let his daughter leave the nest. She says that she is ready for adulthood and the commitments of marriage. (Go to Page 7)
Page 6: The fairytale abruptly screeches to a halt in the face of her emotionally-stinted tendencies and her husband’s lying, cheating ways, and the couple lives under a cloud of uncertainty that is never quite resolved. (Go to Page 7)
Page 7: Later in life, death comes calling for her father, and she is (present, Page 8; not present, Page 9) for his final moments.
Page 8: At his bedside, she summons the strength needed to assure him that she will use his long-lasting love and smart lessons to live in a way that will make him proud. (Go to Page 10)
Page 9: On the telephone, she listens as he whispers into the phone his dying wish: that she continue to hold her head high regardless of the stresses and struggles of her life. (Go to Page 10)
Page 10: The last words spoken between them are when (she says, Page 11; he says, Page 12).
Page 11: “You can let go.”
Page 12: “Cowgirls don’t cry.”
Grade (Cowgirls Don’t Cry): C
Written by Ronnie Dunn and Terry McBride
Listen: Cowgirls Don’t Cry