Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, BILL AND THE SUPE (A MINING CAMP BALLAD), by BERTON BRALEY



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BILL AND THE SUPE (A MINING CAMP BALLAD), by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Now listen to me, while I tells to you
Last Line: You've heard as much as I heard, that's all!
Subject(s): Labor & Laborers; Mines & Miners; Work; Workers


Now listen to me, while I tells to you,
The tale of the Supe an' of Bill McGrue.

Bill he was takin' a little mope
After drillin' his holes in the stuffy stope,

An' settlin' down on a timber car
He lights a match to a bum cigar.

He scurcely more than gits a light
When a guy in overalls heaves in sight.

"Takin' a rest?" says he to Bill.
"You bet," says William, an' sets right still.

"Ain't you got nothin' at all to do?"
"I have," says Bill, "When I'm ready to."

"What would you do," says the stranger guy,
"If the shift boss happened to wander by?"

"I'd set," says Bill, "like a tired bloke,
An' take my time fer my rest an' smoke."

"Do you know," says the stranger, "who I am?"
"I don't," says William, "nor care a damn!"

"Well, I am the superintendent here."
Bill's grin extended from ear to ear.

"The supe," he says, "of the hull big mine?
That's bully," he says, "that's grand, that's fine;

"A mighty good job fer a man to git,
If I was you I would tend to it!"

Then Bill leans back on the empty car
An' goes on smokin' his bum cigar.

An' then what happened? I don't recall.
You've heard as much as I heard, that's all!





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