Paul Laurence Dunbar
Paul Laurence Dunbar, 1872-1906

After a Visit
by Paul Laurence Dunbar
[from Lyrics of Lowly Life, 1896]

I be’n down in ole Kentucky
     Fur a week er two, an’ say,
‘T wuz ez hard ez breakin’ oxen
     Fur to tear myse’f away.
Allus argerin’ ’bout fren’ship
     An’ yer hospitality–
Y’ ain’t no right to talk about it
     Tell you be’n down there to see.

See jest how they give you welcome
     To the best that ‘s in the land,
Feel the sort o’ grip they give you
     When they take you by the hand.
Hear ’em say, “We ‘re glad to have you,
     Better stay a week er two;”
An’ the way they treat you makes you
     Feel that ev’ry word is true.

Feed you tell you hear the buttons
     Crackin’ on yore Sunday vest;
Haul you roun’ to see the wonders
     Tell you have to cry for rest.
Drink yer health an’ pet an’ praise you
     Tell you git to feel ez great
Ez the Sheriff o’ the county
     Er the Gov’ner o’ the State.

Wife, she sez I must be crazy
     ‘Cause I go on so, an’ Nelse
He ‘lows, “Goodness gracious! daddy,
     Cain’t you talk about nuthin’ else?”
Well, pleg-gone it, I’m jes’ tickled,
     Bein’ tickled ain’t no sin;
I be’n down in ole Kentucky,
     An’ I want t’ go ag’in.

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