The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #34525   Message #1903751
Posted By: Goose Gander
08-Dec-06 - 03:26 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Pretty Little Pink
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Pretty Little Pink
My pretty little pink I once did think,
That you and I would marry,
But now I've lost all hope of that,
I can no longer tarry.

I've got my knapsack on my back,
My musket on my shoulder,
To march away to Mexico,
To be a gallant soldier.

Where coffee grows on a white oak tree,
And the rivers flow with brandy,
Where the boys are like a lump of gold,
And the girls as sweet as candy.

As collected and printed by James Mooney, "Folklore of the Carolina Mountains," The Journal of American Folklore, Vol. 2, No. 5 (April-June, 1889), p.104

Mooney printed these lyrics as an example of a children's "song game": "One song of this kind was obtained from a lady living on Oconaluftee River, who had sung it when a child at her old home near Murphy, in the extreme southeastern corner of the state . . . . The lady had forgotten the details of the game, but remembered that one girl, presumably the "pretty little pink," stood in the centre, while the others marched around her singing the song. She said it had a very pretty tune, which she had forgotten . . . . The lady stated, however, that as she had known it the children said "Quebec Town" instead of "Mexico," which might indicate that the first part of the song goes back as far as the French and Indian war." p.104

Of course, the Quebec reference could also date the song to the American War of Indepedence or the War of 1812. And as bizarre as it seems, Alex Cox in his new film offers evidence that the United States planned an invasion of Canada in the inter-war decades of the twentieth century.