James Edwin Campbell

Bohemian Ups And Downs

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Way up in a garret high,
Just a few feet from the sky,
Dwell I in Bohemia.
What care I for aught below?
There have I nor friend nor foe;
Pity I the struggling throng
While I live my life of song
Up here in Bohemia.


'Tween my teeth my briar root --
Best of friends, since always mute --
Rare thing in Bohemia.
Upward as the thick smoke curls
What care I for simp'ring girls?
Love is weak; my pipe is strong,
Why for love, then, be the song
Sung here in Bohemia?


Oft my little songs fall flat,
Hungry? What care I for that,
Fasting in Bohemia?
Put my only coat in pawn,
Live on that and still sing on;
Puff my pipe and think I've dined --
Barmecidal feasts I find
Often in Bohemia.


Haply, then, my rhymelets take,
With a check my fast to break,
Feast we in Bohemia.
'Round the corner of the block,
Sign o'erhead a crowing cock,
Mug of beer and sandwich fine;
What care we how nabobs dine,
Feasting in Bohemia.


Friends have I, some three or four --
Quite enough, for who has more,
In or out Bohemia?
With them joy is always young,
Grief is but a song that's sung;
Live we, laugh we debonair,
Skies are bright and winds are fair
Always in Bohemia!

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James Edwin Campbell