The Boys In Blue (MacEdward Leach)

The office was just open
When a man quite worn in years,
Upon his care-worn face
He wore a sign of tears;
And as the clerk approached him,
With tear-dimmed eyes he said,
"l am here to wait all for my son,
He is coming home today."

"This is not an express station,
But just the town depot,
And if your son is coming home,"
The clerk did smile and say,
"You will find him at the station
With the passengers on their way."

"You do not rightly understand,"
The old man shook his head,
He's not coming as a passenger
But by express instead;
He is coming home to mother,"
With tear dimmed eyes he said,
"He is coming in his casket,
He is coming to us dead."

Just then the whistle pierced their ears.
"The express!" somebody cried,
With quickening steps the old man rose
And quickly rushed outside;
From the baggage car a long white box
Was lowered down to them,
The sight was most heart-rendering
To all that stood around.

"Don't handle it so roughly,
It contains my dear son Jack,
Who left us in his health and strength,
See how he is coming back;
He has broke his dear old mother's heart,
Her words are coming true,
For she told him he would come back dead
If he joined the boys in blue."

####.... Variant of The Express Office written by Gussie L Davis ©1899 ....####

Collected in 1951 from Francis M (Frank) O'Brien [1917-1998] of Trepassey, NL, and published in MacEdward Leach And The Songs Of Atlantic Canada ©2004 Memorial University of Newfoundland Folklore and Language Archive (MUNFLA).


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