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The Drunkard's Dream (2) "What makes you look so healthy now? You dress so neat an' clean; I have not seen you drunk about, Pray tell me, where you been? "An' is your wife an' children well? You once did use them strange; Or have you to them kinder grown, What makes this happy change?" "It was a dream, a warnin' one, That heaven sent to me, That snatched me from a drunkard's curse, Great wants an' misery. "My wages was all spent in drink, Oh, what a wretched view; I almost broke my Mary's heart An' starved my children, too. "Oh, Mary's form did waste away, I seen her sunken eyes; I starved my children night an' day, I heard their wailin ' cries. "I thought once more I staggered home, I seen a silent gloom; I missed my wife-where could she be? An' strangers in the room. "I heard them say, `Pore thing, she's dead, She's lived a turrible life, Grief an' sorrow has broke her heart, Who'd be a drunkard's wife!' "My children stood a-cryin' round, They scarcely drawed their breath; I knelt an' kissed her lifeless form Forever cold in death. " 'Oh father, father, wake her up. The folks all say she's dead, An' make her speak an' smile once more, An' we won't cry for bread.' " 'She is not dead,' I frantic cried, I run to where she lay; I knelt an' kissed her once-warm lips Which now was cold as clay. " 'Oh Mary, speak once more for me, I'II never give you pain; I'II never grieve your lovin' heart, I'II never drink again! " 'Oh Mary, speak, it's Edward's call,' I says. `I know,' she cried; An' when I woke my Mary dear Was weepin' by my side. "I pressed her to my throbbin' heart, An' joy an' tears did stream; I ever since have heaven blessed For sendin' me that dream." From Ozark Folksongs, Randolph Collected from Judy Jane Whittaker, MO 1928 note: This was one of the most-popular temperance songs. It dates from the 1850s. Recorded by Puckett and by the North Carolina Ramblers. RG RG apr96
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