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Lyr Req: The Dying Hobo

rburns@uniontel.net 18 Dec 98 - 05:34 PM
Joe Offer 18 Dec 98 - 05:52 PM
Susan A-R 19 Dec 98 - 10:12 PM
BSeed 19 Dec 98 - 10:45 PM
Barbara 20 Dec 98 - 03:08 AM
BSeed 20 Dec 98 - 03:20 AM
GUEST,K. Brobeck, New England 02 Mar 06 - 11:14 AM
Joe Offer 02 Mar 06 - 01:22 PM
Joe Offer 02 Mar 06 - 05:38 PM
Goose Gander 02 Mar 06 - 09:07 PM
GUEST,Dale 02 Mar 06 - 09:18 PM
Joe Offer 02 Mar 06 - 09:55 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 02 Mar 06 - 11:17 PM
GUEST,Sharon O'Shaughnessy 10 Mar 06 - 12:12 AM
Bert 10 Mar 06 - 02:34 AM
GUEST,ClaireBear 14 Mar 06 - 04:12 PM
GUEST,Mrr 15 Mar 06 - 01:26 PM
GUEST,Mrr 15 Mar 06 - 01:28 PM
GUEST,William Jackson 23 Apr 18 - 10:59 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 24 Apr 18 - 08:51 PM
Jim Dixon 02 May 18 - 10:17 AM
Lighter 02 May 18 - 03:26 PM
Lighter 02 May 18 - 06:14 PM
Lighter 02 May 18 - 09:29 PM
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Subject: PLEASE HELP!!!
From: rburns@uniontel.net
Date: 18 Dec 98 - 05:34 PM

I am looking for a song that my Great grandfather used to sing to my grandfather. The lyrics go something like this:

"In a boxcar one day a dying hobo lay"

Please help me find the name of this song so I can get it for my grandfather for Xmas.

THanks rburns@uniontel.net


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!!
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 Dec 98 - 05:52 PM

Ah, you would have gotten help quicker if you had helped yourself. That's what our search box is for. I e-mailed you the lyrics.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!!
From: Susan A-R
Date: 19 Dec 98 - 10:12 PM

Wow! the wonderful thing about this is the stimulation to the memory. Is that the one where the guy's "buddy" steals his socks and hops the next train?? Hadn't thought of it for years. I've found myself saying that a lot as I read through these threads. Might keep my mind agile at that.


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!!
From: BSeed
Date: 19 Dec 98 - 10:45 PM

No, it's probably Jimmie Rodgers' "The Dying Hobo." Or am I going off half-cocked again, Joe? --seed


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!!
From: Barbara
Date: 20 Dec 98 - 03:08 AM

Seed, we'll have to ask those nearer and dearer to you about the 'half-cocked', but surely by now you know how to use the search engine here. I put [dying hobo lay] in the box up there and learned that it is indeed the one where his comrade steals his shirt and shoes and hops the eastbound train. Not Jimmie Rodgers.
Blessings,
Barbara


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!!
From: BSeed
Date: 20 Dec 98 - 03:20 AM

Barbara (and Joe), my posting was merely to nudge Joe into at least naming the song for the edification of the rest of us. rburns asked the question, true, and joe emailed the lyrics, but a question once asked on the threads needs to be answered on the threads. And it brought the blessed Barbara back in touch with me--what more could I ask? --seed


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!!
From: GUEST,K. Brobeck, New England
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 11:14 AM

The Dying Hobo: "and then he hocked his shoes and socks, and hopped an eastbound train."
is the last line, the way my Day used to "sing" it in Berkeley. He had a singing range of
about 5 notes and only this and "Bluebeard" were within his range.
Would love to see all the lyrics.


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!!
From: Joe Offer
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 01:22 PM

Hi, K. Brobeck -
Welcome to the Mudcat Cafe. We have "Dying Hobo" in our Digital Tradition Folk Song Database here (click). We'll have to do some more work and see what else we can dig up on it. It has been published in some of the best-known American folk songbooks - The Folk Songs of North America (Alan Lomax), and Ozark Folksongs (Randolph), to name two - also in Sigmund Spaeth's Weep Some More, My Lady.
-Joe Offer-

Here's the entry on the song from the Traditional Ballad Index:

Dying Hobo, The [Laws H3]

DESCRIPTION: An old hobo lies dying as winter approaches. He speaks of the "better land... where handouts grow on bushes" that he is destined for, sends a message to his girlfriend, and dies. His partner "swiped his (coat and hat) and caught an eastbound train"
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1915 (Cox)
KEYWORDS: railroading train death friend robbery
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MW,NE,SE,So,SW)
REFERENCES (9 citations):
Laws H3, "The Dying Hobo"
Randolph 837, "The Dying Hobo" (1 text)
BrownIII 360, "The Dying Hobo" (2 texts plus mention of 1 more)
Hudson 112, pp. 251-252, "The Dying Hobo"; 113, p. 252, "The Hobo's Death" (2 texts)
Lomax-FSNA 219, "Around a Western Water Tank" (1 text, 1 tune)
Spaeth-WeepMore, p. 131, "The Dying Hobo" (1 text)
JHCox 56, "The Dying Hobo" (1 text)
cf. Gardner/Chickering, p. 478, "The Dying Hobo" (source notes only)
DT 644, DYINHOBO LTTLSTRM

Roud #1937
RECORDINGS:
Burnett & Rutherford, "Little Stream of Whiskey" (Columbia 15133-D, 1927 (rec. 1926); on BurnRuth01)
Travis B. Hale & E. J. Derry, Jr., "The Dying Hobo" (Victor 20796, 1927)
Kelly Harrell, "The Dying Hobo" (Victor 20527, 1926; on KHarrell01 -- a rather strange version combining the first verse of "The Dying Hobo" with a story, taken from "George Collins," of a girl mourning her dead lover)
George Lay, "The Dying Hobo" (AFS 12,050 A19, 1959; on LC61)
McMichen's Melody Makers, "The Dying Hobo" (Columbia 15464-D, 1929)

CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "The Big Rock Candy Mountain" (lyrics)
cf. "The Hobo's Last Ride" (plot)
Notes: Several sources list this as a parody of "Bingen on the Rhine." Laws, however, does not mention the connection; perhaps he knew versions with different tunes? - RBW
File: LH03

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Instructions

The Ballad Index Copyright 2005 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


The version in Lomax, "Around a Western Water Tank," seems to me to be Danville Girl. It has parallels with "Dying Hobo" - but it lacks a dying hobo...


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Subject: ADD Version: Dying Hobo
From: Joe Offer
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 05:38 PM

The Dying Hobo

Beside a western water tank one cold November day,
Inside an empty boxcar a dying hobo lay,
His old pal stood beside him with low and drooping head,
And listened to the last words the dying hobo said.

I'm going to a better land where everything is bright,
Where handouts grow on bushes, you can sleep out every night,
You never have to work at all and never change your socks,
Where little streams of whiskey come trickling down the rocks.

Tell my old girl back in Muncie that her face no more I'll view,
That I have caught a fast train and I am going through,
Tell her not to wait for me, no tears in her eyes must lurk,
For I'm going to a better land where they hate that word called work.

Hark, I hear her whistle, I must catch her on the fly,
Goodbye, old pal, he murmured, it's not so hard to die,
His head fell back, his eyes grew dim, he had sung his last refrain,
His partner swiped his coat and hat and caught an eastbound train.



From Mrs. Lillian Short, Cabool, Mo., Aug. 8, 1940.

#837 in Vance Randolph's Ozark Folksongs, Volume IV


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!! - Dying Hobo?
From: Goose Gander
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 09:07 PM

Here are three versions from the Max Hunter Folk Song Collection


Dying Hobo

Dying Hobo #2

Dying Hobo #3

Here's what Laws has to say . . . .

"After Speaking to his partner about the hoboe's paradise he will find after death, the hobo dies. His partner steals his hat and shoes and catches the eastbound train.

'The train pulled in on a siding
On a cold November day;
Beside a western water tank
A dying hobo lay'

G. Malcolm Laws, Native American Balladry (Philadelphia: The American Folklore Society, 1964), p.231.


Also from the Max Hunter collection, here's Western Water Tank


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!! - Dying Hobo?
From: GUEST,Dale
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 09:18 PM

I heard it first from a Starday album by Jim Glaser of the Glazer Brothers. I have it ~~ somewhere.


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Subject: ADD Version: Little Stream of Whiskey
From: Joe Offer
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 09:55 PM

Here's the version in Long Steel Rail. The lyrics follow the Doc Watson lyrics in the DT. I haven't heard the Doc Watson recording, so I don't know about the tune.
-Joe Offer-

The Dying Hobo
Little Stream of Whiskey

By a western water tank, one cold November day,
Beside an empty boxcar, a dying hobo lay.
His pal was standing 'fore him, with a low and drooping head,
Listening to the last words the dying hobo said.

"So long, partner hobo, I hate to say goodbye,
I hear my train a-coming, I know she's getting nigh.
Tell the old conductor to just wail off the stops
To get a drink of whiskey come flowing down the rocks.

"To tell my girl in Danville she need not worry at all,
For I am just a-going where I will not have to work.
I will not have to work at all, nor even change my socks,
And little stream of whiskey come flowing down the rocks.

"I'm going to a better place where everything is bright,
Where handouts grow on bushes, you can sleep out every night.
Where I will not have to work at all, not even change my socks,
And little stream of whiskey come flowing down the rocks."

from Cohen, Long Steel Rail
as recorded by Burnett and Rutherford, 1926

The Burnett and Rutherford recording is on the Yazoo Kentucky Mountain Music box set.

Click to play


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!! - Dying Hobo?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 02 Mar 06 - 11:17 PM

I have a nice haunting rendtion done by my uncle (circa 1920's USA) ....seque's easily with "Hobo Bill."

I would be most happy to share - when the MC comes into its new formation.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!! - Dying Hobo?
From: GUEST,Sharon O'Shaughnessy
Date: 10 Mar 06 - 12:12 AM

My great-grandfather used to sing a version of this song. The lyrics were a little different...

Beside a western water tank on a hot midsummer's day
Beneath an open boxcar a dying hobo lay.
His partner knelt beside him with a low and drooping head
And listened to the very last words the dying hobo said.
Oooooooh...
"I'm going," said the hobo, "to a land that's fair and bright.
The climate is so healthy, the pigs stay out all night.
Where hammocks grow on bushes and people never wash their socks
And little streams of whiskey come tricklin' down the rocks."

Soooooooo...
Tell my girl in Denver, who's face I'll never view
That I have caught the eastbound train, and I am comin' through.

Wellllllll...
His head fell back and his eyes fell shut and he breathed his last refrain…
His partner stole his shoes and socks and caught the eastbound train!


I always liked the line about the pigs when I was little. :-)

We're from the Reading area of Pennsylvania. I've seen Danville and Muncy mentioned
in versions of this song, both Pennsylvania towns about two hours west of Reading.   So I don't know if its true roots are Pennsylvanian. Could be.


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!! - Dying Hobo?
From: Bert
Date: 10 Mar 06 - 02:34 AM

I love that Jimmie Rodgers song "Hobo Bill" Garg. Now what do you mean "
when the MC comes into its new formation"?


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Subject: Lyr/Tune Add: THE DYING HOBO
From: GUEST,ClaireBear
Date: 14 Mar 06 - 04:12 PM

I wanted to add to this thread over a week ago, but couldn't remember all the lyrics of my father's version. Thank goodness we had a family reunion last week; it took all four of us kids to piece it together. Unfortunately none of us has a clue where Dad got it.

His brother Uncle Gene had been a hobo, so my father (himself an eminently respectable historian who I suspect sometimes wished he'd gone "on the bum" instead) had a particular, wistful fondness for this song. The lyrics to the version he sang were a bit like the Ozarks Folksongs words, except that the respective locations of the boxcar and the girlfriend make it quite clear the pal wasn't going to deliver the message -- a detail I always found poignant. On the whole I think these lyrics are more sympathetic to the hobo's lot than most...and it's the only version I know of that mentions heaven by name.

A few other differences as well, notably a couple of lines that scan differently and seem to be better suited to the alternate tune he used. Dad's version had 2-line verses and a rather mournful waltz-time tune that sounded, if you can imagine, sort of vaguely like a particularly torpid rendition of "The Frozen Logger". Near as we can remember, this is how he sang it:

THE DYING HOBO

In a Chicago trainyard, one cold December day,
Inside an empty boxcar a dying hobo lay.

His comrade knelt beside him, and low he bent his head,
And listened to the last few words the dying hobo said.

"Go tell my girl in Denver her face no more I'll view,
For I have caught a Heav'n-bound train and I am going through

Where handouts grow on bushes and windows have no locks,
And little streams of alcohol come tricklin' down the rocks."

His eyes grew dim, his head fell back; he'd sung his last refrain.
His comrade swiped his hat and shoes and hopped an east-bound train.

---

Here's an approximation of the tune, in slow 3/4 time, key of C. In arial, it should line up. In any other font, line up the slashes and it'll come out about right.

Sorry I don't have a better way to record it.


Rhythm:   3 / 12 3   / 1 2 3 / 1 2 3         / 12   3   /   1 2   3   / 1      2 3   / 1 2 3 / 1 2
Notes:      E / E.. E / C.. D / E E ..       / ..    E   /   F..    F / C      D .. / E ..    / ..
Lyrics:      In / a   Chi / ca-go / trainyard .. /.. # one / cold.. De / cember .. / day .. /... #

Rhythm:   3 /1 2 3 / 1 2   3 / 1 2 3      / 1 2 3 / 1 2 3   / 1 2 3 / 1
Notes:      G /G    G / F    E / E D ..    / ..    g   / F F..   / E .. D / C
Lyrics:      In /side an / emp-ty / boxcar.. /.. #   a / dy-ing / ho-bo / lay.


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!! - Dying Hobo?
From: GUEST,Mrr
Date: 15 Mar 06 - 01:26 PM

I know one about "hobo Bill, the railroad bum was taking his last ride" - very different song but still about a dying hobo. Will look for the lyrics and post if they aren't in the trad...


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Subject: RE: PLEASE HELP!!! - Dying Hobo?
From: GUEST,Mrr
Date: 15 Mar 06 - 01:28 PM

Yes, it's here.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Dying Hobo
From: GUEST,William Jackson
Date: 23 Apr 18 - 10:59 PM

I believe the poem was written by Harold Jackson, who taught me, his son, when I was a tyke. I know the poem to this day. Harold, born in 1898, road the rails for awhile. He also played vaudeville.

One more reason I believe the poem might have been written by Harold Jackson is I found a penciled copy of his work in a notebook while going through some family items.

Any info would be appreciated.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Dying Hobo
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 24 Apr 18 - 08:51 PM

Dear Mr. William jackson,

Yes, I know this one...and have an unusual tape from his home in Nevada....several local regimes ago.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE HOBO'S LAMENT (John Kern, 1912)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 02 May 18 - 10:17 AM

I think this pushes back the oldest known date a bit and possibly supplies an author:

From The Railroad Trainman, Vol. 29, No. 5, (Cleveland: Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, May, 1912), page 411:


THE HOBO'S LAMENT.

'Twas at a western water tank.
One cold December day.
Within an empty boxcar
A dying hobo lay.

His partner stood beside him,
With sad and drooping head;
And silently he listened
While the dying hobo said:

"I am going," said the weary,
"To a land that's fair and bright;
Where the weather's always warm enough
To sleep outdoors at night.

"Where the handouts grow on bushes,
And houses have no locks.
And little streams of alcohol
Come trickling down the rocks.

"Tell my kid back in Chicago,
When once more his face you see.
That I am thinking of him always;
Tell him not to weep for me.

"Tell him that I am dying game.
In his eyes no tears must lurk;
For I am going to a land that's fair.
Ten thousand miles from work."

—John Kern


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE DYING HOBO (Joseph Colavita)
From: Lighter
Date: 02 May 18 - 03:26 PM

"Aberdeen [South Dakota] Daily News" (Dec. 14, 1910), p. 5:

POEMS BY A KNIGHT OF THE ROAD

Joseph Colavita, Now In The Sioux Falls Penitentiary, Was A True Poet

Citizens of Aberdeen will remember Joseph Colavita, the man who was arrested in Milwaukee by Chief Elliott and Milwaukee detectives, by [sic] one of the swiftest recoveries ever heard of in the northwest, after the robbery of the Olwin-Angell store, but few heard at the time of the many-sided nature of the man, who was a genuine "knight of the road," educated, who wrote a good hand, and whom the "wanderlust" had driven, back and forth, from sea to sea, and from the Gulf to Canada. Among the possessions left, when he was shipped to Sioux Falls, was a little notebook. In this were found complete records of the number of miles traveled, the cities visited, written in a splendid hand.

    But the chief attraction of the book were [sic] the number of little poems and songs which Colavita had written from time to time. All have to do with scenes and experiences while he was "on the road," and some are filled with the spirit that drove Colavita restlessly over the face of the earth.

    One of the best little poems contained in the booklet was "The Dying Hobo," scribbled out in Colavita's handwriting. It is reproduced faithfully, as follows:

                      "A Dying Hobo"
                   (By Joseph Colavita)

    Beside a western tank, one cold November day,
    Inside an empty boxcar, a dying hobo lay,
    As his partner stood beside him, with low and drooping head,
    Listening to the last words this dying hobo said.

    Chorus--
    "I am going to a better land, where everything is bright,
    Where handouts grow on bushes, and you sleep out every night;
    Where you don't have to work at all, or ever change your socks;
    And little streams of whiskey come trinkling down the rocks.

    "Tell my sweetheart back in Denver that no more her face I'll view,
    Tell her that I have jumped the fast freight, and that I am going through;
    Tell her not to weep for me; no tears in her eyes must lurk,
    For I am going to a land where I don't have to work.
   
    "Hark! I hear her whistling. I must catch her on the fly.
    Farewell, partner, I must leave you. It ain't so hard to die."
    The hobo stopped - his head fell back - he'd sung his last refrain.
    His partner swiped his hat and shoes, and jumped the east-bound train.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Dying Hobo
From: Lighter
Date: 02 May 18 - 06:14 PM

The same text (except for "I'll not have to work") appeared a few months earlier in the Alliance (Neb.) Herald, May 26, 1910, Memorial Day Section, p. 10.

Colavita's "chorus" is simply the second stanza of the Herald's version.

The version in The Western Liberal (Lordsburg, N.M.), March 26, 1915, is virtually identical except for the location: "a Lordsburg water tank."

The paper received the poem from "Officer L. D. Walters of the Southern Pacific."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: The Dying Hobo
From: Lighter
Date: 02 May 18 - 09:29 PM

From "Marconi Service News" (March, 1919), p. 23:

"It is now Christmas morning. Christmas of 1918, somewhere in France....Of our detachment of 52 at Garden City, 18 have been killed at the front, 20 have been wounded, 9 have been decorated by the French or Americans, 3 are prisoners in Germany, 1 is interned in Switzerland, and I have been permanently hurt in an aeroplane accident. Quite a record for our detachment, don't you think?

...Here is a new song I'll sing you on arrival:


Beside a Belgian water-tank, on a cold and wintry day,
Beneath his busted bi-plane, a poor observer lay.
His pilot lay on a telegraph pole, and he was almost dead,
While he listened to the last words the poor observer said:

Oh, I'm going to a better land, a land that's always bright,
Where cocktails grow on bushes, and you stay up all the night.
You never have to work at all — not even change your socks,
And sparkling "Vauvray" on each side,
A trickling down the rocks.

(Vauvray is a famous wine of Touraine, upon which officers and soldiers subsist during periods of depression and homesickness. It possesses the quality of rendering the person indifferent to sadness, reverses, cracked skulls and blackened eyes, traffic, etc., sometimes even to bodily discomforts, for frquently persons after drinking this magical potion have been found reposing upon hard paving blocks, apparently in sound and refreshing sleep.)

***

Reaching farther back into my archives:

From Henry Mayers, "Ye A.E.F. Hymnal" (Nancy, France, 1918-19), p.6:

BESIDE A BELGIAN WATER TANK

               I

Beside a Belgian water tank
One cold and wintry day,
Beneath his busted Biplane,
The young observer lay;
His pilot hung from a telegraph pole
But not entirely dead
And he listened to the last words
This young observer said.

CHORUS

"Oh, I'm going to a better land
Where everything is bright,
Where handouts grow on bushes
And they stay out late at night.
You do not have to work at all
Nor even change your socks,
And drops of Johnny Walker
Come trickling thru the rocks."

                II

The pilot breathed his last few gasps,
Before he passed away;
"I ll tell you how it happened -
The flippers fell away.
The motor would'nt work at all,
The ailerons flivered too;
A shot went through the gas tank
And let the gas leak thru."

                III

Their spirits left their bodies
And as they upward flew
Said the Pilot to the Observer,
I'll tell you what we'll do -
We'll get Old Pete to give us wings
And back to earth we'll fly
And h[a]unt those gol-darned Ki-wis
Until the day they die.


[Kiwi = nonflying officer]

****
"Evening Public Ledger" (Phila.) (Dec. 11, 1919), Sports Extra, p.10:

"Clipped from Flights and Landings, the newspaper edited at Seventh A.I.C. It is by H. R. Bowman, who delivered the original the Ninety-seventh Squadron show. ... It is entitled "The Dying Grease-Hound," which, we are informed, means an expiring aviation mechanic. We wish we had space for more of it:

My Mademoiselle in Clermont
My face no more will see,
Those wild, wild girls in Aulnat
I know they'll think of me,
And when they call the muster roll
They'll call my name in vain
For I've eaten my last mess of beans,
Drunk my last cup of rain.

I'm going to a better land
Where everything is bright,
Where Vichy passes grow on trees
And you can stay out every night.
Where the M.P.'s will not bother you,
And you needn't change your sox
And little streams of Cognac
Come trickling down the rocks.

[A.I.C. = Aviation Instruction Center; cup of rain = cup of weak (army) coffee]

******


From "Les Voyageurs Song Book" (Ann Arbor, Mich.: Minnie Maes Root, 1926), pp. 42-43:

                   BELGIAN WATER TANK

Beside a Belgian water tank
On a bright mid-summer's day,
Beneath his shattered aeroplane
The young observer lay;
His pilot hung on a telephone pole.
He was completely dead.
As we listened to the dying words
The young observer said.

"We're going to a better land,
"Where everything is bright,
"Where whiskey grows on bushes,
"Play poker every night;
"We'll never do a bit of work,
"Just sit around and sing;
"Oh, grave where is thy victory,
"Oh, death, where is thy sting."

The gates of hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling,
For you, not me;
I hear the angels sing-a-ling-a-ling
Not you, for me;
Oh, death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling,
Oh, grave, thy victory;
Ting-a-ling-aling, sting-a-ling-a-ling,
Sing-a-ling-a-ling for me.

Usually it's the "bells" of hell that go ting-a-ling-a-ling. As here, from the Melbourne "Argus" (Jan. 30, 1943), p.2:

                BESIDE A PAPUAN WATERFALL

Beside a Papuan waterfall, one bright September day,
Beside his shattered Kittyhawk a young PO he lay,
And as he hung on a coconut tree not yet completely dead,
Oh, listen to the very last words, the young PO he said:

I'm going to a better land where everything is bright,
Where whisky grows on coconut trees, they play poker every night,
There is no work to do all day, just sit around and sing,
Il y beaucoup women, too. Oh, death, where is thy sting!

Oh, death, where is thy sting-a-ling-a-ling,
Where, grave, thy victory?
The bells of hell go ting-a-ling-a-ling
For you, but not for me.
I asked her would she marry, marry me,
But all that she could say,
Was ting-a-ling-a-ling, oh, ting-a-llng-a-ling,
Ting-a-ling-a-ling all day.

[P.O. = pilot officer]

There are several more recent but comparable versions.


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