NELL OF THE YUKON
by
Ronnie Barker
 My tale is a weird one - 'twas found, long ago, 
In a book on my Grandpappy's shelf 
So hush while I tell it, and don't make a sound, 
'Cos I'd like to hear it myself.

lt was writ in the days when the Yukon was rich, 
And the miners got drunk every night. 
It was writ all in red, by my old Uncle Jed, 
'Cos he was the one as could write.

Now the story begins with a quarrel, one night, 
Between Jed and his pretty wife, Nell; 
She'd lost all his dough at the gambling saloon, 
And one of her garters as well.

Now Nell was a gal with a wonderful shape;
She could hit a spitoon at ten paces; 
When she went on the town, she wore a tight gown,
And was seen in all the right places.

Well, she'd come home that night, just a little bit tight, 
And she threw off her clothes in disgust.
'What's the matter?' said Jed, and she drunkenly sald 
As she undid her corset, 'You're bust!'

Now jed knew what she meant, all his gold she had spent,
And he sat there awhile, making faces;
Then as she bent over to unlace her boots,
He gave her a belt, with his braces.

Nell gave a great jump, with her hand to her rump, 
And a yell all Alaska could hear 
Then she made a quick run, and she snatched up Jed's gun, 
And she poked it inside of Jed's ear.

'That's the finish,' said Nell, 'I've had all I can take, 
Do you hear me? - Get out of my sight!' 
Well, old Jed could hear... and the gun in his ear
Made him hear even better that night.

So he quitted the shack, and he never looked back, 
And he set out to search for more gold; 
But his luck it was out, and he wandered about, 
Till at last he was dying of cold.

So he dragged himself into a nearbv saloon, 
Which was known as the 'Barrel of Glue' 
It was one of those joints where the men are all men, 
And most of the women are, too.

The place was a gambling hell, it was clear;
Every man jack was betting and boozing 
Three miners were winning a strip poker game, 
And a girl with no clothes on was losing.

Jed sat down at a table and bought himself in
By produdng his very last dollar; 
And he started to deal with hope in his heart, 
And three aces under his collar.

And he won thick and fast; when the evening was past, 
He owned all the gold on the table...
As well as six mines, and a three-quarter share
In a Mexican showgirl called Mabel.

Then in walked Black Lou, with a sackful of gold, 
And he challenged poor Jed, with a leer...
'One cut and one call, and the winner takes all,
And the loser must buy all the beer!'

What could Jed do? he hated Black Lou,
As everyone did in those parts;
So Jed shuffled the cards, and both players cut,
And both players cut... Ace of Hearts!

Then up jumped Black Lou, and his face went bright blue, 
(Which astonished a passing physician) 
And he used a foul word that no one had heard
Since the time of the Great Exhibition.

'You cheated, you swine.' said Lou with a whine, 
As he grabbed Uncle Jed round the neck; 
And he started to squeeze, 'til Jed dropped to his knees, 
And with one final wheeze, hit the deck.

The whole saloon froze as Black Lou drew his gun
'Alright stranger!' said he, 'Have it your way.'
When in rushed a woman... and as Lou turned round, 
She spat stralght in his eye, from the doorway.

It was Nell! There she stood, and she really looked good
As she grabbed Jed, and rushed him outside
And they didn't stop running for seven long miles, 
Till they found themselves some place to hide.

'Twas a room booked by Nell in a sleazy hotel, 
A dollar-a-night double-roomer 
It was built out of driftwood, and named 'The Savoy' 
By some guy with a quick sense of humour

Well, they flopped on the bed... 'Thank the Lord,' said old Jed, 
'My gambling days are behind me, 
But I'm puzzled, dear Nell, and I want to hear tell, 
How in hell's name you managed to find me?'

'I've been wandering too, all around, just like you,'
Said Nell, 'and the thought makes me wince;
And the reason, my dear, was that whack on the rear...
I just ain't sat down, ever since.'

And they lay there awhile, then Jed, with a smile
Said, 'I'll never more leave this old town
We'll find peace, you and I.' but he got no reply, 
For young Nell was a-sleeping... face down. 
The end