Digital Tradition Mirror

The Hell-Bound Train (2)

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The Hell-Bound Train (2)

A drunkard lay on the bar-room floor
He drunk till he could not drink no more;
He went to sleep with a troubled brain
And dreampt he was on the hell-bound train.

The fireman he was a crazy tramp,
An' the headlight it is a brimstone Lamp,
The tank was full of lager beer,
An' the Devil himself was the engineer.

The train it flew at an awful pace,
The brimsione a-burnin' both hands an' face,
An' worse an' worse the roadbed grew,
An' faster an'faster the engine flew.

He blowed the whistle an' rung the bell,
An' the Devil says, "Boys, the next stop's Hell,"
An' all the passengers yelled with pain
An' begged the Devil to stop the train.

But the Devil he laughed at their misery,
He hollered an' roared an' yelled with glee,
You paid your fare, with the rest of my load,
An' you got to ride to the end of the road.

You robbed the weak an' done wrong to the pore,
Turned hungry folks away from your door,
You laid up gold till your purses bust,
You ruined young gals with your beastly lust.

You mocked at God in your stubborn pride,
You murdered an' killed an' cheated an' lied,
You double-crossed partners an' cussed an' stole,
You belong to me both body an'soul.

You paid your fare at Shamrock's bar,
An' now you'll ride in the Devil's car,
An' here's one time when I am no liar,
I'll carry you all to the land of fire.

Your bones will burn in the flames that roar,
You'll scorch an' sizzle from rind to core,
Then the barroom rang with a awful scream
As the drunkard woke from his turrible dream.

Down on his knees on the barroom floor,
He prayed as he never had prayed before,
His prayers an' vows was not in vain,
An' he rode no more on the hell-bound train.

From Ozark Folksongs, Randolph
Collected from Mrs. S. M. Burks, MO 1911


Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!

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