Posted by: Oklahoma Sun | March 15, 2010

The Guardhouse.

The Guardhouse.


William Patterson White. The Pacific Monthly, February 1911.

 

O I‘M lyin’ in the mill with my feet agin’ the sill;
I’m as thirsty as the Arizona sand.
Both my eyes are turnin’ black, an’ my shirt’s torn up the back,
An’ my head is achin’ me to beat the band.
I was workin’ up a rep. so that I could get my step,
Now—I’ll call upon the Colonel in the mornin’.
O it’s “Prisoners! Turn out!” you can hear the Sergeant shout
When it’s time to see the Colonel in the mornin’.

Though I ‘m feelin’ badly bent, I aint sorry that I went,
For the soldier he must have his little fun;
But it doesn’t do to fight when the guard has got you right,
An’ you’d better take that tip from me, my son.
O I tried to lick the guard, but I found the job too hard,
So I’ll call upon the Colonel in the mornin’.
An’ it’s ‘‘Prisoners! Turn out!” . . .

It was only yesterday that I drew my monthly pay,
An’ tonight my name is written in the Book.
An’ instead of mounted drill, I’ll be cleanin’ up the mill,
Or else peelin’ Molly Hogans for the cook.
So, you rookies, mend your ways, or you’ll get your thirty days
When you call upon the Colonel in the mornin’.
For it’s “Prisoners! Turn out!” . . .

Twas a cold an’ dreary day that the Gov’ment took away
All the canteens where we used to get our beer;
But it ordered them shut down, so we have to go to town,
An’ that’s just the very reason I am here!
O it’s all the Gov’ment’s fault just as sure as “Hump!” means “Halt!”
An’ I’ll tell that to the Colonel in the mornin’!
O it’s “Prisoners! Turn out!” you can hear the Sergeant shout
When it’s time to see the Colonel in the mornin’.

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