Why Don't The Men Propose? (Johnny Burke)

The girls are asking day and night,
"Why don't the men propose?"
Are they afraid the sturdy lass
will wring him by the nose?
Now I will tell the reason, girls,
the men delay so long,
You will have it all for nothing
if you read this little song.

The men they can't afford
the style the girls are aping at,
They can't afford five dollars
for a fancy khaki hat;
Their salaries are very small,
and if they took a wife,
They would have to live on snowballs
for the balance of their life.

And if he's left to take a wife,
what will be his surprise?
She wants blue jersey summer suits
for all her little boys;
She wants a hat like one she saw
last week on Mrs Gaul,
And a watch and set of ear-rings
when the visitors will call.

Her mother comes to stay with her,
and no one calls on me,
She runs the whole shebang alone
as all her friends can see;
I am fossed 'round like a crackie,
and my head is sore from blows,
And now the girls are wicked
why the softies don't propose.

####.... Johnny Burke [1851-1930] of St John's, NL ....####

Published in Burke's Ballads, pg.9, c.1960, compiled by John White and archived at Memorial University of Newfoundland, Libraries, Centre For Newfoundland Studies - Digitized Books collection.

See more songs by Johnny Burke.

From the Dictionary of Newfoundland English:
Crackie - small, noisy mongrel dog; frequently in phrase 'saucy as a cracky,' applied to a person who usually has a saucy tongue or a person who will answer back.
Fossed - thrown roughly; played around with.


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