On the bridge at midnight, stood I in dismay
Watching weary stragglers passing on their way
Silently reflecting, dreaming there alone
All their joys and sorrows seemed to be my own
See the wretched gambler looking deathly white
All his fortune vanished in one single night
With a look of horror peeps into the stream
Thinks of wife and childen, shattered in his dream.

Refrain: 'Ruined, fleeced and cheated, fool I was to play
Home! how can I face it? What am I to say?'
Whither will he wander? Heaven only knows
Crushed and broken hearted too, across the bridge he goes.

Next with steps erratic comes the city clerk
Button-holed and stick too, ready for a lark
Been to Smoking Concert, sung his latest song
'Can't be twelve yet, works have all gone wrong
What a beastly nuisance last omnibus has gone
Must be in the office at nine tomorrow morn.'
Then he'll ask the 'Bobby', 'Oblige me with a light,
Thank you all the same old chap, much obliged, good-night!'

Refrain: 'Only got three-ha'pence, this is jolly queer
Where's the other six-pence? Must have gone in beer
Well, here goes to walk it, Jingo, how it blows.'
Lights another cigarette as o'er the bridge he goes.

Comes the muffled burglar, glancing left and right
Shuffling like a spectre, shuns the glaring light
Touches his revolver with a murderous leer
What's a life to him when sweet liberty is near
Next with flying footsteps comes a common thief
Hunted like a tiger, trembling like a leaf
Hark the cry, 'They've got him' tries to break away
Appeals aloud for mercy, hear what he's to say

Refrain: 'Let me off this time sir, my wife is ill in bed
It's hard to hear the children crying out for bread
This is my first offence sir. It is! God only knows.'
Mercy wasn't meant for him as o'er the bridge he goes.

Hark! a peal of laughter, like a bird in song
A pretty young actress trips her way along
Hugging 'floral' tributes in her dainty arms
Whist her tall admirer reminds her of her charms
'Didn't they go frantic when I did my dance?
I told you I should knock them when I got the chance
Take a cab, no thank you, I haven't far to walk
Leave me at the corner please, you know how people talk.'

Refrain: 'This is too bad of you Flo, don't go on like this
You know you are so fetching, just one platonic kiss
There's not a soul about here, hang it, don't say no'
Hugging, squeezing, teasing, across the bridge they go.

Next a form approaches at a halting pace
Grief has failed to shatter the beauty of her face
Promises and falsehoods fondly she believed
Now her dream is ended, foresaken and deceived
Silently to Heaven she offers up a prayer
Gazes at the river, then shudders in despair
Clutching some love token in her withered hands
Like an apparition, on the brink she stands.

Refrain: 'Why did he foresake me? Him I loved so well
Hark the bell is tolling, bidding earth farewell
Frantically her hands, high in the air she throws
A sigh, a leap, a scream, 'tis done
As o'er the bridge she goes.
Written and composed by Fred Bowyer & George Le Brunn -1889
Performed by Charles Godfrey (1851-1900)
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