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American Ballads and Folk Songs
Though sunburned and freckled,
A daisy you bet,
And we use her at night
For a headlight on deck.
So haul in your tow line And take in your slack, Take a reef in your breeches And straighten your back; Through sunshine and storm Down the towpath we'll walk, And we'll touch up the mules When they kick and they balk.
A verse sung by Cork Leg Jonny Bardey, in Bonnys Theatre, Commercial Street, about 1877. From E. S. Franke, Buffalo, New York, May 17, 1933:
The cook we had upon the deck
Stood six feet in her socks;
Her hand was like an elephant's ear,
Her breath would open the locks.
A maid of sixty summers was she,
As handsome as a pig,
And every time she'd go to sleep
Oh, suffering, how she'd snore!
Then it's tramp-tramp-tramp,
And tighten up your lines j
And watch the playful horse flies,
As o'er the mules they climb.
Gidap, gidap, whoa!
Forget it I never shall,
When I drove a pair
Of spavined mules
On the Erie Canal.