Complete Poetical Works


Bret Harte

HERE’S yer toy balloons!    All sizes!
Twenty cents for that.    It rises
Jest as quick as that ’ere, Miss,
Twice as big.    Ye see it is
Some more fancy.    Make it square
Fifty for ’em both.    That’s fair.

That’s the sixth I’ve sold since noon.
Trade’s reviving.    Just as soon
As this lot’s worked off, I’ll take
Wholesale figgers.    Make or break,—
That’s my motto!    Then I’ll buy
In some first-class lottery
One half ticket, numbered right—
As I dreamed about last night.

That’ll fetch it.    Don’t tell me!
When a man’s in luck, you see,
All things help him.    Every chance
Hits him like an avalanche.
Here’s your toy balloons, Miss.    Eh?
You won’t turn your face this way?
Mebbe you’ll be glad some day.
With that clear ten thousand prize
This ’yer trade I’ll drop, and rise
Into wholesale.    No!    I’ll take
Stocks in Wall Street.    Make or break,—
That’s my motto!    With my luck,
Where’s the chance of being stuck?
Call it sixty thousand, clear,
Made in Wall Street in one year.

Sixty thousand!    Umph!    Let’s see!
Bond and mortgage’ll do for me.
Good!    That gal that passed me by
Scornful like—why, mebbe I
Some day’ll hold in pawn—why not?—
All her father’s prop.    She’ll spot
What’s my little game, and see
What I’m after’s her.    He! he!

He! he!    When she comes to sue—
Let’s see!    What’s the thing to do?
Kick her?    No!    There’s the perliss!
Sorter throw her off like this.
Hello!    Stop!    Help!    Murder!    Hey!
There’s my whole stock got away,
Kiting on the house-tops!    Lost!
All a poor man’s fortin!    Cost?
Twenty dollars!    Eh!    What’s this?
Fifty cents! God bless ye, Miss!

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