Bessie Bobtail (op. 2, no. 3)

(1934)

"Bessie Bobtail" is the third song of Samuel Barber's Three Songs, Op. 2.

Bessie Bobtail
by James Stephens


As down the road she wambled slow,
She had not got a place to go:
She had not got a place to fall
And rest herself - no place at all!
She stumped along, and wagged her pate;
And said a thing was deperate.


Her face was screwed and wrinkled tight
Just like a nut - and, left and right,
On either side, she wagged her head
And said a thing; and what she said
Was desperate as any word
That ever yet a person heard.


I walked behind her for a while,
And watched the people nudge and smile:
But ever, as she went, she said,
As left and right she swung her head,
"O God He knows: And, God He knows!
And, surely God Almighty knows!"


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