With “Just Me and the Ponies (For Christmas This Year),” Canadian rancher-turned-songwriter Corb Lund tells one of the saddest stories ever about this supposed season of joy.
But this is not so festive.
In a sheepish, almost embarrassed voice, Lund sings about a lonely man in the mountains whose kids are definitely not coming home this year. All he’s got for company are his horses and a never-ending blanket of windblown snow.
Lund told Rolling Stone Country he wrote the track based on a few people he knows who, for one reason or another, lead mostly solitary lives.
“Christmas tends to be an extra sad time for them,” he said. “My personal pick for the low point of the song mood-wise (high point art-wise) is when the old guy has gone to the trouble of buying and wrapping gifts for his loved ones, just on the slightest chance they might show up but knowing they are almost certainly not. The theme of being old and alone resonates with me personally, too, as I’ve spent 110 percent of my adult life building a career, not a family.”
In the end, Lund ends up alone, as well. He spent his holiday trying to bring joy to others, busy shooting some gaudy Christmas special for TV. But when the studio cameras shut down, who’s he got to smile for?
Add a double shot of whiskey to your eggnog and say goodbye to Christmas cheer with Corb Lund’s aching “Just Me and These Ponies (For Christmas This Year).”