Robert William Service
Hot Digitty Dog
Hot digitty dog! Now, ain't it queer,
I've been abroad for over a year;
Seen a helluva lot since then,
Killed, I reckon, a dozen men;
Six was doubtful, but six was sure,
Three in Normandy, three in the Ruhr.
Four I got with a hand grenade,
Two I shot in a midnight raid:
Oh, I ain't sorry, except perhaps
To think that my jerries wasn't japs.
Hot digitty dog! Now ain't it tough;
I oughta be handed hero stuff -
Bands and banquets, and flags and flowers,
Speeches, peaches, confetti showers;
"Welcome back to the old home town,
Colour Sargent Josephus Brown.
Fought like a tiger, one of our best,
Medals and ribands on his chest.
cheers for a warrior, fresh from the fight . . ."
Sure I'd 'a got 'em - - had I been white.
Hot digitty dog! It's jist too bad,
Gittin' home an' nobody gald;
Sneakin' into the Owl Drug Store
Nobody knowin' me any more;
Admirin' my uniform fine and fit -
Say, I've certainly changed a bit
From the lanky lad who used to croon
To a battered banjo in Shay's Saloon;
From the no-good nigger who runned away
After stickin' his knife into ol' man Shay.
They's a lynched me, for he was white,
But he raped my sister one Sunday night;
So I did what a proper man should do,
And I sunk his body deep in the slough.
Oh, he taunted me to my dark disgrace,
Called me a nigger, spat in my face;
So I buried my jack-knife in his heart,
Laughin' to see the hot blood start;
Laughin' still, though it's long ago,
And nobody's ever a-gonna know.
Nobody's ever a-gonna tell
How Ol' Man Shay went straight to hell;
nobody's gonna make me confess -
And what is a killin' more or less.
My skin may be black, but by Christ! I fight;
I've slain a dozen, and each was white,
And none of 'em ever did me no harm,
And my conscience is clear - I've no alarm;
So I'll go where I sank Ol' Man Shay in the bog,
And spit in the water . . . Hot digitty dog!
Robert William Service's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (Hot Digitty Dog by Robert William Service )
Still I Rise
The Road Not Taken
If You Forget Me
Edgar Allan Poe
I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
A Dream Within A Dream
Edgar Allan Poe
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(30 December 1865 – 18 January 1936)
Lawrence S. Pertillar
- WH Auden
(10 February 1898 – 14 August 1956)
(August 19, 1902 – May 19, 1971)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
Rainer Maria Rilke
(4 December 1875 – 29 December 1926)
- E. E. Cummings
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- Death is Nothing at All, Henry Scott Holland
- Elogio al Aprendizaje, Bertolt Brecht
- Tonight I can write the saddest lines, Pablo Neruda
- Elegy I, Rainer Maria Rilke
- Eko O ni Baje-Tribute to the city of Lagos, JESUROBOOWIE GIFT IMAFIDON
- Freedom's Plow, Langston Hughes
- Alone, Maya Angelou