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After the Strike (Joseph A. Hemer) Air-"After the Ball" Once a pretty maiden climbed an old man's knee Asked for a story-"Papa tell me, Why are you lonely, why are you sad, Why do your shopmates call you a scab?" I had friends, pet, long, long ye-ars ago, How I lost them you soon shall know; I'll tell it all, pet, tell all my shame; I was a scab, pet, I was to blame." cho: After the strike is over, After the men have won, After the shops have opened, After the notice is down; Many the heart is aching, Though the hope seems bright That many a scab will vanish After the strike. Brave men were fighting, standing side by side, Fighting for justice, fighting with pride, I then was with them---with them heart and soul, But when the test came, I left them in the cold, I thought it best, pet, best to turn a scab; Best to return, pet, to the job I had, That's why I'm lonely, that's why I'm sad, That's why my shopmates call me a scab. cho: Many years have passed, pet, since I won that name, And in song and story they have told my shame, I have tried to tell them, tried to explain, But they will not listen, pleading is in vain; Everywhere I wander, everywhere I roam, The story of my shame is sure to find my home, I'd give my life, pet, I'd give my all, If I had not turned traitor, or scabbed at all. cho: From American Labor Songs of the Nineteenth Century, Foner Note: published in the United Mine Workers' Journal, May 24, 1894 RG
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