James Edwin Campbell

The Courting Of Miss Lady-Bug

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Des come urlong, my honey chile an' sot down on my knee,
An' Unker Eph 'll tell you ob de Baid-Bug an' de Flea.


Dese gempmen wen' ur co'tin' ob de sweet Miss Lady-Bug;
She lib at num'mer fo'ty in ur flat quite neat an' snug.


Marse Baid-Bug wo' his crimson ves', his beaver, how hit shine!
De ladies at de winders smiled ez he parsed down de line.


Marse Flea, he wo' ur swaller-tail ob orful stylish gray;
He med Miss 'Skeeter's h'a't beat fas' whar libbed ur cross de way.


She envied sweet Miss Lady-Bug huh comperny so gran' --
She des de meanes' dried ol' maid an' ugly, sabe de lan'!


Marse Baid-Bug retch de reserdence an' "ting" he ring de bell,
An' out dar come Miss Lady-Bug, hit gin him quite ur spell.


He put his han' urpon his h'a't an' bowed so orful low,
Dat des ur leetle furder an' his nose 'ood tech de flo.'


She bowed him in de pa'lah fine an' took his hat an' cane;
Dat she wuz 'joiced ter see him, O, she showed it mighty plain.


He hemmed an' hawed ur leetle an' den he cross his laigs,
Wen "tingle" wen' de bell urgin an' knocked him off his paigs.


De do' wuz flung wide open by de butlah, Mistah Gnat,
An' in dar strutted Mistah Flea ur twirlin' ob his hat.


Marse Baid-Bug looked at Mistah Flea an' hate wuz in his eye,
W'ile Flea looked at Miss Lady-Bug ez dough he gwine ter die.


Dey sot an' sot an' looked an' looked an' neider one 'ood go;
Miss Lady-Bug she sot ur tween an' gawrped, des sorter so.


An' still dey sot an' sot an' stared wid eyes des full ob hate,
'Twel Missis Bug called down de sta'rs: "My deah, hits growin' late."


Dey grabbed dey hats an' grabbed dey canes an' out de do' dey went;
At five ur clock dat mawnin' Mistah Flea ur chellenge sent.


Marse Baid-Bug choose his secon', Mistah Ho'net wuz his name;
He hail f'um ol' Kaintucky an' dey say he sho' wuz game.


De Mud Wasp s'po'ted Mistah Flea, ur gempman tried an' true;
De secon's hed been dar urfo' an' knowed des wut ter do.


Dey met at fo' dat eb'nin' sha'p down hyuh in Fire-Bug Lane,
Now Mistah Flea goes on ur Crutch an' Baid-Bug on ur cane.


An' Lady-Bug? W'y honey chile, de women's all de same;
Dey's built dat way, an' so I s'pose de creeturs ain' ter blame!


Dey fit at fo' dat eb'nin' sha'p; at five de papah's tol'
How Lady Bug hed runned urway wid Captain Cock-Roach bol'!

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James Edwin Campbell