by Paul Gerard Smith performed by Pat O'Malley Paul Revere No doubt you've 'eard me tell about my sojer friend, Sam Small Who wouldn't pick 'is musket up when sargent let it fall, Until the Duke of Wellington said, "Sam, pick up thy gun!" And Sam replied, "Aye Duke, I will... For thee 'tis gladly done." But 'ave I ever told you of 'ow Sam came over 'ere, And 'ow 'e got acquainted with a chap called Paul Revere? It seems there'd been an argument about a bit of tea Some chaps dressed up like Indians 'ad dumped it in the sea. And when the news of this event was told to George the Third 'E shifted on 'is throne a bit, and said an ugly word. "'Tis mutiny," 'e muttered, "and the situation's grave. We'll 'ave to send some troops across to make those lads be'ave." The troops lined up and answered , " 'Ere," as sargent called the roll, Till, where there should 'ave been a man there was an empty 'ole. "Oo's missing from this cavity?" they 'eard the sargent bawl, And as one man they answered, in two syllables, "Sam Small!" Just at that moment Sam appeared, and straightway took 'is place. The sargent stood and glared at Sam with fury in 'is face. "You're late at roll call, Small," 'e said, "and that's no bloody joke. What's your excuse?" Sam cleared 'is throat and said, "Me shoestring broke." They sailed away and by and by they reached the other shore The sargent lined them up again, then suddenly 'e swore, For where a sojer should 'ave been there was no man at all. "Oo's missing?" said the sargent. And the others said, "Sam Small!" 'E found Sam sitting on a stone, the one called Plymouth Rock. On one of Sam's feet was a boot, on t'other, just a sock. The sargent roared, "Why aren't you there with all the other men?" Sam looked up, 'aughty like, and said, "Me shoestring broke again." "Well, patch it up!" the sargent said, "We 'ave no time to wait, We've got to get to Lexington. We're twenty minutes late. Fall in. Left turn, and forward march!" Away they went, and then It 'appened as 'e knew it would... Sam's shoestring broke again. 'E slipped out of the ranks and sat down on a pile of 'ay, And while 'e fixed 'is shoestring up, the Army marched away. Sam tied a knot, then took 'is shoe and slowly put it on, And then stood up and wondered which way 'ad the Army gone. 'E took a coin and flipped it, tails was left and 'eads was right. The coin fell in a puddle. when 'e found it, it was night. Imagine 'is predicament; 'twould touch an 'eart of stone: The Army gone, Sam stood there... in the darkness-all alone. It were quickly getting chilly, so Sam started through the dark. Away off in the distance 'e beheld a tiny spark. 'E passed a clump of bushes; 'e did not intend to stop When suddenly, to 'is chagrin, 'e felt 'is shoestring pop. What could 'e do? 'E sat right down to fix it up, of course; Of a sudden 'e was startled by the whinny of an 'orse. 'E jumped up quick and saw an 'andsome stranger standing near. "Oo's that?" 'e cried. The stranger said, "My name is Paul Revere. "Judging from your costume you're a stranger 'ereabout, And, pardon my inquiring, does your mother know you're out?" "I'm a British sojer," Sam replied, "I've some'ow lost my way. I sat to fix my shoestring, and the Army marched away. "They're on their way to Lexington." "You don't say," answered Paul. "And do they come by land or sea?" "By land," said Samuel Small. "I'd like to get to Lexington to meet them if I can. The Sargent will be angry... 'e's a bitter little man. "I'll tell you what," said Paul Revere, "I'll gladly lend an "and. You're sure that they don't come by sea?" Sam said, "They come by land." "My 'orse can carry two," said Paul. "Just 'op up 'ere be'ind. I'll take you up to Lexington." Said Sam, "You're very kind." And so they rode to Lexington. Paul stopped at every door And Sam got off and 'eld 'is 'orse till 'e came back once more. "The British are approaching," people shouted loud and clear. "Aren't they 'ospitable?" said Sam. "They are," said Paul Revere. And when they got to Lexington the feeling there was tense. A man was back of every tree and back of every fence. Sam saw 'is Army coming, and 'e waved at them-and then 'E 'eard some shots... the Army turned and marched away again. When this news reached 'is Majesty 'e wasn't pleased at all. 'E said, "I want a word or two with Private Samuel Small." And when Sam stood before 'im, 'e said, "Sam, what's this I 'ear? You're sent to fight for Britain and you fight for Paul Revere." Sam stood there very dignified and cleared 'is throat and spoke: "The 'ole thing wouldn't 'appen if me shoestring 'adn't broke. It's hard upon a sojer, and there isn't any use To try to win a battle when your shoe keeps working loose." "There's something, Sam, in what you say," 'is Majesty replied. "It's difficult to concentrate when shoestrings come untied. We've lost a lot of battles that we can't afford to lose; 'Ereafter we fight barefoot... or we'll all wear button shoes."
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