Modern Street Ballads


In Lunnon town each day, strange sayings will be springing,
But, if you list to me, a new one I’ll be singing,
As you go through the town, the people will be funning,
One cries out, “Put it down, here’s the man a-coming!”

’Twas only t’other day, as sure as I’m a sinner,
A leg of pork I bought, to have a slap up dinner,
When, half way down the street, a young scamp came by, running,
Says he “Guv’ner, drop that meat, here’s the man a-coming!”

Young married folks, I fear, to extremes often dash on,
They’re always in a fright, though studying the fashion;
Each day with fear and dread, the tradesmen they are shunning,
“Jem, get under the bed, here’s the tally man a-coming!”

There’s lots of ups and downs, and lots of rummy dodgings,
But I do it quite brown, in taking furnish’d lodgings;
I own I’m very poor, to pay there is no fun in,
So I always bolt the door, when I hear the landlord coming!

It’s pleasant in this place, to see your smiling faces,
And, gents, too, I presume, you’re in your proper places;
Now, there’s one stands there so sly, I know he’s very cunning,
I say, “Mind what you’re at, here’s the man a-coming!”

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The End As I Know It: A Novel of Millennial Anxiety, by proprietor Kevin Shay, is now available in paperback.

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