The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #4571   Message #4030928
Posted By: Joe Offer
29-Jan-20 - 04:57 AM
Thread Name: Origins: The Big Rock Candy Mountain(s)
Subject: ADD: A Hobo Poet (1895)
The influence of spring is not lost on the hobo. It even moves him to poetry. The other day the following lines were found in a cell at the city prison that had just been vacated by some tramps. It is entitled, “The Dying Hobo”:

It was at a Western water-tank,
One cold November day;
Within an empty box-car
A dying hobo lay.
His partner stood beside him,
With sad eyes and drooping head,
And patiently he listened
As his dying comrade said:

“I am going,” said the hobo,
To a land that’s fair and bright—
Where the weather’s always warm enough
To sleep outdoors at night;
Where handouts grow on bushes,
And folks ne’er comb their locks,
And littLe streams of alcohol
Are running down the rocks.

“Go, tell my Front-street sweetheart,
When next her face you view,
That I’ve caught the Great Eternal Freight—
I’m going to ride it through.
Go tell her not to weep for me—
No tears in her eyes to lurk—
For I’m going to a country fair,
Where no man has to work.

“Hark! I bear the engine’s whistle!
I must catch her on the fly!
Oh, heaven bless you, dear old pard—
It is so hard to die!”
He bowed his head; he dropped his eyes,
And he never spoke again;
His partner left and jumped the beam
Of an eastbound tourist train*avIEUkSiWTAikVuiCHOBoA.jpeg

“A Hobo Poet,” Sacramento Daily Record-Union, May 9, 1895