In the Tunnel

A poem by Francis Bret Harte

Didn’t know Flynn,
Flynn of Virginia,
Long as he’s been ’yar?
Look ’ee here, stranger,
Whar hev you been?

Here in this tunnel
He was my pardner,
That same Tom Flynn,
Working together,
In wind and weather,
Day out and in.

Didn’t know Flynn!
Well, that is queer;
Why, it’s a sin
To think of Tom Flynn,
Tom with his cheer,
Tom without fear,
Stranger, look ’yar!

Thar in the drift,
Back to the wall,
He held the timbers
Ready to fall;
Then in the darkness
I heard him call:
“Run for your life, Jake!
Run for your wife’s sake!
Don’t wait for me.”
And that was all
Heard in the din,
Heard of Tom Flynn,
Flynn of Virginia.

That’s all about
Flynn of Virginia.
That lets me out.
Here in the damp,
Out of the sun,
That ’ar derned lamp
Makes my eyes run.
Well, there, I’m done!

But, sir, when you’ll
Hear the next fool
Asking of Flynn,
Flynn of Virginia,
Just you chip in,
Say you knew Flynn;
Say that you’ve been ’yar.

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