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Told My Captain

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Told My Captain

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Told My Captain

Told my captain
My hands were cold.
God damn your hands, boy,
Let the wheelin' roll!
     Told my captain
     My feet were cold.
     God damn your feet, boy,
     Let the wheelin' roll!

Captain, captain
You must be blin'
Look at your watch
It's past quittin' time.
     Captain, captain
     How can it be,
     Whistle done blow
     You still workin' me?

Asked my captain
To give me my time
Dam' old captain
Wouldn't pay me no mind.
     If I'd-a had my
     Weight in lime [1]
     Would've whupped that captain
     Till he went stone blind.

Raised my hand
To wipe the sweat from my head
Damned old captain
Shot my buddy dead.
     If you don't believe
     That my buddy's dead
     Just look at the hole
     In my buddy's head.

Captain walkin' up and down
Buddy's lyin' on the burning ground.
Buzzards circling 'round the sky
Buzzards sure know
Captain's gonna die.

[1] If I was white (or if I were on equal terms for a fair fight)

Recorded on Chain Gang, Joshua White and the Carolinians
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III