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Hot Digitty Dog

 Hot digitty dog! Now, ain't it queer,
I've been abroad for over a year;
Seen a helluva lot since then,
Killed, I reckon, a dozen men;
Six was doubtful, but six was sure,
Three in Normandy, three in the Ruhr.
Four I got with a hand grenade, Two I shot in a midnight raid: Oh, I ain't sorry, except perhaps To think that my jerries wasn't japs.
Hot digitty dog! Now ain't it tough; I oughta be handed hero stuff - Bands and banquets, and flags and flowers, Speeches, peaches, confetti showers; "Welcome back to the old home town, Colour Sargent Josephus Brown.
Fought like a tiger, one of our best, Medals and ribands on his chest.
cheers for a warrior, fresh from the fight .
" Sure I'd 'a got 'em - - had I been white.
Hot digitty dog! It's jist too bad, Gittin' home an' nobody gald; Sneakin' into the Owl Drug Store Nobody knowin' me any more; Admirin' my uniform fine and fit - Say, I've certainly changed a bit From the lanky lad who used to croon To a battered banjo in Shay's Saloon; From the no-good nigger who runned away After stickin' his knife into ol' man Shay.
They's a lynched me, for he was white, But he raped my sister one Sunday night; So I did what a proper man should do, And I sunk his body deep in the slough.
Oh, he taunted me to my dark disgrace, Called me a nigger, spat in my face; So I buried my jack-knife in his heart, Laughin' to see the hot blood start; Laughin' still, though it's long ago, And nobody's ever a-gonna know.
Nobody's ever a-gonna tell How Ol' Man Shay went straight to hell; nobody's gonna make me confess - And what is a killin' more or less.
My skin may be black, but by Christ! I fight; I've slain a dozen, and each was white, And none of 'em ever did me no harm, And my conscience is clear - I've no alarm; So I'll go where I sank Ol' Man Shay in the bog, And spit in the water .
Hot digitty dog!

Poem by Robert William Service
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