Thursday, January 1, 2009

Christmas Eve in the Bronx - written Dec 1940

In the interest of historical accuracy, stereotypes not modified:
By George Wandell

Twas Christmas Eve in the Bronx; in the old tenement,
Not a family was moving, they'd all paid their rent.
The landlord was rubbing his hands gleefully,
As he gazed, with delight, at his big Christmas tree.
The cop in the corner, ever ready for graft,
Moved about quite uneasily; afraid of the draft.

Up the stairs tramped Tim Murphy, overloaded with booze,
You could tell it was him by the squeak of his shoes.
Mrs Katz, on the first floor, put herrings to soak,
She expected her Sam home about nine o'clock.
On the next floor above, dwelt young Mrs Howe,
She was dressing a tree for her little pet Chow.

Mrs Bruno was getting spaghetti to boil,
For Tony's late meal, after a long day of toil.
Mrs. Murphy, up higher, got her bird to prepare,
While the kids round the table, let out a glad cheer.
When, all of a sudden, came a noise down the street,
Twas the Salvation Army; and their drums they did beat.

The kids raised the window and shouted with glee,
When they spied an old man, Santa Claus, with a tree.
Straight to the tenement strode dear old Saint Nick,
And he opened the door, just as quick as a a wink.
Up the stairs he then started, past Mrs. Katz door,
To the home of the Murphy's, with presents galore.

To Jack, a steam engine, a dolly for May;
And Billy was pleased with his flexible sleigh;
To Jimmy, a bicycle; Tommy, a drum,
Mrs. Murphy got handkerchiefs, Daddy got rum.
Santa was invited to sit down and eat,
They'd a dinner of corned beef and carriage; a treat.

All hands ate quite hearty as you would assume,
Then Santa Claus told them he had to leave soon.
He had quite a lot of calls in his book,
And only stopped in, just to give them a look.
He bade them good-bye, as he jumped in his sleigh,
Shouting out Merry Christmas, he hurried away.

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