CHAIRLEY BURKE'S IN TOWN
BY JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY
It's Chairley Burke's in town, b'ys! He's down til "Jamesy's Place,"
Wid a bran'-new shave upon 'um, an' the fhwhuskers aff his face;
He's quit the Section-Gang last night, an' yez can chalk it down
There's goin' to be the divil's toime, since Chairley Burke's in town.
Ye'll know 'um by the neck av 'um behind--the tan an' fair
The barber left he overfilled before he mowed a hair;
Ye'll know 'um by the ja'nty hat juist bought he's wearin' now--
But Chairley--He'll not miss it in the mornin' onyhow!
It's treatin' iv'ry b'y he is, an' poundin' on the bar
Till iv'ry man he's drinkin' wid musht shmoke a foine cigar;
An' Missus Murphy's little Kate, that's coomin' there for beer,
Can't pay wan cint the bucketful, the whilst that Chairley's here!
He's joompin' oor the tops av shtools, the both forninsht an' back!
He'll lave yez pick the blessed flure, an' walk the straightest crack!
He's liftin' barrels wid his teeth, an' singin' "Garry Owen,"
Till all the house be shtrikin' hands, since Chairley Burke's in town.
He'll sink the glitther av his eye a-dancin' deep an' dim,
The toime yez tie his hands behind an' thin lave go av him!--
An' fwhat's the knots av mortal man ag'insht the nimble twisht
An' shlim an' shlender soopleness that he have in his wrisht!
The Road-Yaird hands coomes dhroppin' in, an' niver goin' back;
An' there's two freights upon the switch--the wan on aither track--
An' Mr. Gearry, from The Shops, he's mad enough to shwear,
An' durstn't spake a word but grin, the whilst that Chairley's there!
Och! Chairley! Chairley! Chairley Burke! ye divil, wid yer ways
Av dhrivin' all the throubles aff, these dhark an' ghloomy days!
Ohone! that it's meself, wid all the graifs I have to dhrown,
Must lave me pick to resht a bit, since Chairley Burke's in town.