He was a traveling tinker lad
And I was a gypsy jade,
Yet never were two so gay and glad,
And a perfect pair we made;
Bruises I’ve known since life began,
Blows and the love that smothers:
But I’d rather have the curse of my man,
Than the kisses of all others.
When Black Mike called me a lousy bitch
Jim was so mad, like hell ‘e
Flammed, and Mike lay there in the ditch
With a jack-knife in his belly.
Then came the cops and they put away
My bully behind the bars,
And he’ll lose for a score of years, they say,
The light o’ the larky stars.
And yet in spite o’ his dismal doom
No garb of woe I’m wearing,
For the seed of him is in my womb,
And son for him I’m bearing;
And when they swing the prison gate,
And him like blind they’re leading,
His boy and I with bliss will wait,
Although our hearts are bleeding.
Then we will take with wildwood track,
And he’ll be wae and weary,
But when he gets his manhood back
And beats me I’ll be cheery.
And maybe some fowl’s neck I’ll wring,
And maybe we’ll get tipsy;
So by a thorn fire how we’ll sing!
What heaven for a gypsy!