Time was when I’d gladly have listened,
Before I was tainted with shame,
But it wouldn’t be fair to you honey;
Men laugh when they mention my name.Back there on the farm in Nebraska,
I might have said yes to you then,
But I thought the world was a playground;
Just teeming with Santa Claus men.
So I left the old home for the city,
To play in its mad, dirty whirl,
Never knowing how little of pity,
It holds for a slip of a girl.You think I’m still good-looking honey!
But no I am faded and spent,
Even Helen of Troy would look seedy,
If she followed the pace I went.
But that day I came in from the country,
With my hair down my back in a curl;
Through the length and the breadth of the city,
There was never a prettier girl.I soon got a job in the chorus,
With nothing but looks and a form,
I had a new man every evening,
And my kisses were thrilling and warm.
I might have sold them for a fortune,
To some old sugar daddy with dough,
But youth called to youth for its lover,
There was plenty that I didn’t know.Then I fell for the “line” of a “junker”,
A slim devotee of hop,
And those dreams in the juice of a poppy;
Had got me before I could stop.
But I didn’t care while he loved me,
Just to lie in his arms was a delight,
But his ardour grew cold and he left me;
In a Chinatown “hop-joint” one night.
Well I didn’t care then what happened,
A Chink took me under his wing,
And down there in a hovel of hell —
I laboured for Hop and Ah-Sing
Oh no I’m no longer a “Junker”,
The police came and got me one day,
And I took the one cure that is certain,
That island out there in the bay.
Don’t spring that old gag of reforming,
A girl hardly ever goes back,
Too many are eager and waiting;
To guide her feet off of the track.
A man can break every commandment
And the world will still lend him a hand,
Yet a girl that has loved, but un-wisely
Is an outcast all over the land.
You see how it is don’t you honey,
I’d marry you now if I could,
I’d go with you back to the country,
But I know it won’t do any good,
For I’m only a poor branded woman
And I can’t get away from the past.
Good-bye and God bless you for asking
But I’ll stick out now till the last.