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Ellis Parker Butler (Эллис Паркер Батлер)


No Beer, No Work


The shades of night was fallin’ slow
As through New York a guy did go
  And nail on ev’ry barroom door
  A card that this here motter bore:
              “No beer, no work.”

His brow was sad, his mouth was dry;
It was the first day of July,
  And where, all parched and scorched it hung,
  These words was stenciled on his tongue:
              “No beer, no work.”

“Oh, stay,” the maiden said, “and sup
This malted milk from this here cup.”
  A shudder passed through that there guy,
  But with a moan he made reply:
              “No beer, no work.”

At break of day, as through the town
The milkman put milk bottles down,
  Onto one stoop a sort of snore
  Was heard, and then was heard no more—
              “No beer, no work.”

The poor old guy plumb dead was found
And planted in the buryin’ ground,
  Still graspin’ in his hand of ice
  Them placards with this sad device:
              “No beer, no work.”



Ellis Parker Butler's other poems:
  1. Why Washington Retreated
  2. The Ballade of the Automobile
  3. Womanly Qualms
  4. When Ida Puts Her Armor On
  5. An Exception


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