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Progressive philosophy in song

08 Dec

Big Rock Candy Mountains – 1928

There have been two song arrangements made from the poem, by Haywire McClintock, and later by Burl Ives, but both are adaptions of earlier folk lyrics, and neither actually authored it.  The author certainly knew all about Communists, Kooks, and Kenyans.

One evening as the sun went down and the jungle fires were burning,
Down the track came a hobo hiking, and he said, “Boys, I’m not turning
I’m headed for a land that’s far away besides the crystal fountains
So come with me, we’ll go and see the Big Rock Candy Mountains

In the Big Rock Candy Mountains, there’s a land that’s fair and bright,
Where the handouts grow on bushes and you sleep out every night.
Where the boxcars all are empty and the sun shines every day
And the birds and the bees and the cigarette trees
The lemonade springs where the bluebird sings
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains.

In the Big Rock Candy Mountains all the cops have wooden legs
And the bulldogs all have rubber teeth and the hens lay soft-boiled eggs
The farmers’ trees are full of fruit and the barns are full of hay
Oh I’m bound to go where there ain’t no snow
Where the rain don’t fall the winds don’t blow
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains.

In the Big Rock Candy Mountains you never change your socks
And the little streams of alcohol come trickling down the rocks
The brakemen have to tip their hats and the railway bulls are blind
There’s a lake of stew and of whiskey too
You can paddle all around it in a big canoe
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains

In the Big Rock Candy Mountains, the jails are made of tin.
And you can walk right out again, as soon as you are in.
There ain’t no short-handled shovels, to axes, saws nor picks,
I’m bound to stay where you sleep all day,
Where they hung the jerk that invented work
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains.

(Author unknown)

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Posted by on December 8, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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