SAM SMALL
CROSSES THE DELAWARE
written by Paul Gerard Smith
performed by
Pat O'Malley
America's a lovely place, the land of liberty, 
Back years ago the Minute Men got mad and set it free, 
Led by that gallant gentleman, the great George Washington
Some say 'twas due to him alone that liberty was won.

Some others say that Lafayette was the deciding force, 
Still others say 'twas Paul Revere, and Agatha, 'is 'orse. 
Such thoughts are idle rumor; they're not the facts at all. 
The question is "'Oo won the war?" The answer is "Sam Small."

If Sam 'ad not come over with the British Fusileers 
The war for Independence might 'ave dragged along for years, 
From the moment Sam Small stepped upon the cold New England shore 
The odds on Britain went from four to one to one to four.

I've told 'ow Sam met Paul Revere and rode to Lexington 
And lost a lovely battle that the British should 'ave won. 
And now I'm going to tell you, if you've 'arf a mo' to spare, 
Of 'ow Sam Small rowed Washington across the Delaware.

When Lexington was over, Sam found 'imself alone 
The army 'ad gone elsewhere, Sam was strictly on 'is own; 
So with 'is 'ands in pockets, 'e just wandered 'ere and there 
And found 'imself one evening down beside the Delaware.

Sam was lonesome, cold and 'ungry, 'e'd 'ad nought to eat since noon, 
'Is stomach was the size and architecture of a prune, 
A bite of something edible was Sam's consuming wish, 
And even Sam could figure, "Where there's rivers... there is fish."

So Sam took out 'is shoestring from the place that it 'ad been. 
And cut 'imself a willow branch and searched round for a pin 
And finally 'e found one, and 'e took an awful chance, 
For you see 'e'd lost 'is buttons and the pin 'eld up 'is pants.

Without the pin Sam 'ad to 'old 'is trousers up by 'and 
And every time 'e'd scratch 'is nose, 'e looked like Sally Rand, 
It was a rare predicament, it made poor Samuel frown 
To stand there fishing with 'is London breeches falling down.

Then Sam was fair disgusted, and 'e sadly cleared 'is throat, 
"I can't fish standing up," 'e said, "I wish I 'ad a boat." 
As if in answer to 'is prayer, 'e 'eard a funny sound 
And, looking, saw a rowboat which 'ad some'ow gone aground.

So with 'is bit of shoestring and 'is willow twig and pin 
Sam got the boat afloat, and 'eld 'is pants and scrambled in 
'E fished till 'e got itchy and 'is legs began to squirm 
And then 'e made another wish... "I wish I 'ad a worm."

Again Sam's prayer was answered, a sparrow over'eard, 
And you know English sparrows are a patriotic bird; 
'E wos taking 'ome a worm for lunch, but 'earing Sam's command 
'E said, "For King and Country," and 'e dropped it in Sam's 'and.

Sam baited up 'is trouser pin and started in to wish, 
And then 'e made another wish: "I wish I 'ad a fish." 
But this time 'twas no use, although 'e fished from morn till night 
And wished and fished and fished and wished, 'e never got a bite.

And by and by 'e went to sleep, and by and by 'e woke 
For 'e'd 'eard somebody speaking, and 'e knew 'e 'adn't spoke; 
And looking up 'e saw some men... and then the tallest one 
Stepped up and said, "Good evening, friend, my name's George Washington."

"We'd like to cross the river, there are Hessians over there, 
And we'd like to sneak up on them, sort of take them unaware; 
Per'aps you'd let us rent your boat for half an hour or so, 
It's really quite important." Sam just looked and answered, "No."

"Come, come, my man," said Washington, "We've got to get across, 
Or what might be a victory will be a total loss. 
If you'll do this for us we'll give you anything you wish."
Sam merely looked at them and said, "I wish I 'ad a fish."

"And you shall 'ave your wish, my man," George Washington replied,
"You're fishing where there are no fish, they're on the other side. 
And if you'll take us over there, I promise you, my lad, 
You shortly will be surfeited with 'alibut and shad."

"Okay! 'op in!" said Samuel Small, and manfully 'e rowed 
'Is muscles bulged, for seven men is quite an 'eavy load. 
One man sang Yankee Doodle, and one baited Sam Small's hook, 
And Washington stood in the bow to 'ave 'is picture took.

And when they reached the other side, George Washington got out 
With all 'is men and Sam just sat and caught a dozen trout. 
There was a bit of shooting, and Sam thought it rather queer 
When 'e 'eard five 'undred 'essians singing, "I surrender, dear."

Then Washington returned to Sam and gave 'im a salute 
And as Sam wos a sojer, 'e stood up and followed suit, 
Then Sam Small felt a draft, and looking down, to his chagrin 
'E saw that there wos nothink where 'is trousers should 'ave been.

And Washington said, "Never mind, just be informal, Sam, 
You've really saved America, and grateful as I am, 
I must repay with gratitude this noble deed you've done. 
Just mention anything you wish, and you shall 'ave it, son."

Sam scratched 'is 'ead and pondered, and 'e seemed to 'esitate 
"Come, come," said Washington. "Make up your mind, it's getting late."
And Sam Small said to Washington with an embarrassed glance, 
"All I want, George, is a button... just a button for my pants."
The end