Joel Chandler Harris

(1848-1908 / USA)

The Plough-Hands’ Song - Poem by Joel Chandler Harris

NIGGER mighty happy w’en he layin’ by co’n—
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’;
Nigger mighty happy w’en he year de dinner ho’n—
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’;
En he mo’ happy still w’en de night draws on—
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’;
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’ des ez sho ’s you bo’n!
En it ’s rise up, Primus! fetch anudder yell:
Dat ole dun cow des a-shakin’ up ’er bell,
En de frogs chunin’ up ’fo de jew done fell:
Good-night, Mr. Killdee! I wish you mighty well!—
Mr. Kildee! I wish you mighty well!—
I wish you mighty well!

De c’on ’ll be ready ’g’inst dumplin’ day,
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’;
But nigger gotter watch, en stick, en stay,
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’;
Same ez de bee-martin watchin’ un de jay,
Dat sun ’s a slantin’;
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’ en a-slippin’ away!
Den it ’s rise up, Primus! en gin it t’ um strong:
De cow ’s gwine home wid der ding-dang-dong;
Sling in anudder tech er de ole time song:
Good-night, Mr. Whipperwill! don’t stay long!—
Mr. Whipperwill! don’t stay long!—
Don’t stay long!

De shadders, dey er creepin’ todes de top er de hill,
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’;
But night don’t ’stroy w’at de day done buil’,
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’;
’Less de noddin’ er de nigger give de ashcake a chill—
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’;
Dat sun ’s a-slantin’ en slippin’ down still!
Den sing it out, Primus! des holler en bawl,
En w’ilst we er strippin’ deze mules fer de stall,
Let de gals ketch de soun’ er de plantashun call:
Oh, it ’s good-night, ladies! my love unter you all!—
Ladies! my love unter you all!—
My love unter you all!


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Poem Submitted: Monday, October 11, 2010



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