Last Trip in the Fall
At Nick Hert's mine near Trenton
Where we put on eighty tons,
Seemed everything was right about
No matter where we'd turn,
But we kept on a-moving
For we must heed duty's call
And landed safe in Cleveland,
Where we laid up for the fall.
Window-glass ice everywhere,
We handled lines with gloves,
They soon were wet, our hands so cold,
And that nobody loves;
But soon we were all winter-set,
0 yes, were feeling fine,
And eating nuts while cracking jokes
Of things along the line.
That winter was the limit, 0 yes,
For us Big Ditch boys;
Had everything at our command
That city folk enjoy.
No matter how the cards would run,
My heart would sing and smile;
I learned these things, yes, years ago
Upon the old canal.
The feather-bedders were unique,
The side-liners just the same;
They worked or played just as they chose
'Twas their part in the game.
But on our boats we loved to go, ,
We moved just for the fun,
While Misses Long Green Silver dollar
We kept on the run!
But who in God's creation
Can enumerate this life?
'Tis so unique and lovely
Where the heart is free from strife.
I'm dyed in wool a Canaler;
I don't care what be the sky,
I'll stay upon the Great Big Ditch
Until the day I die!
Recorded by Pearl Nye (Library of Congress)