Far and near, high
High and low, all
Rich and poor, lord
Prince and page,
sot and sage,
Women all, hear
But it isn't playing the game," he said,
Now there's his dog by his empty bed,
Look at his prizes all in a row:
Chucks it away to die in the dark:
And I called him a fool . . . oh how blind was I!
A fool! Ah no! He was more than wise.
Sez I: My Country calls? Well, let it call
Sez I: My Country? Mine? I likes their cheek.
Sez I: If they would do the decent thing,
Ay, wot the 'ell's the use of all this talk?
. . . So I walked among the willows very quietly all night;
Oh I called him all the night-time, as I walked the wood alone;
Sure I know that it was Shamus by the silver cross he wore;
Now the birds are singin', singin', and I'm home in Donegal,
Where I prayed beside me brother ere I wint to fight anew:
Oh the wife she tried to tell me that 'twas nothing but the
And a-mending of my fish-nets sure I started up in wonder,
Then down the lake came Half-breed Tom with russet sail a-flying,
Says the factor: "Mike, you're crazy! They have soldier
For I joined the Foreign Legion, and they put me for a starter
But I'm sprier than a chipmunk, save a touch of the lumbago,
And at night they gather round me, and I tell them of my roaming
And I tell them of the Furland, of the tumpline and the paddle,
And I tell of lakes fish-haunted, where the big bull moose
So I brag of bear and beaver while the batteries are roaring,
And I tell them when it's over how I'll hike for Athabaska;
For I've had my fill of fighting, and I've seen a nation scattered,
Tramp, tramp, the grim road, the road from Mons to Wipers
A-singin' " 'Oo's Yer Lady Friend? " we started
out from 'Arver,
We started out for God Knows Where, we started out a-roarin';
For on they came like bee-swarms, a-hochin' and a-singin';
Retreat! That was the 'ell of it. It fair upset our 'abits,
Ho yus, there isn't many left that started out so cheerily;
Tramp, tramp, the red road, the wicked bullets 'ummin'
"Hae ye heard whit ma auld mither's postit tae me?
"Be ready at sundoon," snapped Sergeant McCole;
My! but it wis waesome on Naebuddy's Land,
Yet alas! in oor moments o' sunniest cheer
Then Private McPhee sadly shakit his heid:
Oh the sky it wis dourlike and dreepin' a weep
There wis death and destruction on every hand;
But strength has its leemit, and Private McPhun,
And oh but the lads were fair taken aback;
From wrath-red dawn to wrath-red dawn,
A fusillade of melody,
Pure heart of song I do you not know
Me and Ed and a stretcher
"Got to take 'im," snaps Eddy;
Now what would you do? I arst you.
"'Ang on like a limpet, Eddy.
"Stick on like a plaster, Eddy.
Now war is a funny thing, ain't it?
"'Ang on like a hoctopus, Eddy.
It isn't the foe that we fear;
It isn't the mêlée we mind.
It isn't because we lack grit
Oh, the rain, the mud, and the cold,
Oh, weren't they the fine boys! You never saw the beat of
"Come, Yvonne and Juliette! Come, Mimi, and cheer for
The gallant old "Contemptibles!" There isn't much
remains of them,
My leg? It's off at the knee.
But I'll hobble around all right.
I'm gay! You bet I am gay;
With this Caliban mug of mine,
That poilu across the way,
Then sudden, a joyous cry;
So over the blanket's rim
Then I turned to the wall again.
Well, I didn't quiver an eye,
Though she talked in a merry strain,
And at last when she rose to go,
So when she was gone I said
Then I stopped, for lo! she was there,
Then she kissed my burning lips
And so she went sadly away,
When your marrer bone seems 'oiler,
Of course there's no denyin'
I admit it's 'ard contrivin'
So stand up, son; look gritty,
"Flowers, only flowers --- bring me dainty posies,
"I would have you raise me; I can see the West then:
"Flowers, song and sunshine, just one thing is wanting,
I've been sittin' starin', starin' at 'is muddy pair of boots,
And I'm tryin' to remember of a time we wasn't pals.
So when the war broke out, sez 'e: "Well, wot abaht it,
Now wot I wants to know is, why it wasn't me was took?
'E was killed so awful sudden that 'e 'adn't time to die.
There's some as fights for freedom and there's some as fights
There's a drip of honeysuckle in the deep green lane;
Oh I've thought of it so often since I've come down here;
Oh it's Sunday, for she's wearing of her broidered gown;
So I walk beside her kindly, and she laughs at me;
A nice polite reminder that the Boche are nigh;
"Where are you going, Young Fellow My Lad,
"So you're off to France, Young Fellow My Lad,
"Why don't you write, Young Fellow My Lad?
"What is the matter, Young Fellow My Lad?
They've told me the truth, Young Fellow My Lad:
"So you'll live, you'll live, Young Fellow My Lad,
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