Don’t Take My Papa Away From Me (1915)

Words and music written by Joe Hill in the Salt Lake City jail.
First published in the 1916 Joe Hill Memorial Edition of the IWW’s Little Red Songbook.

A little girl with her father stayed, in a cabin across the sea,
Her mother dear in the cold grave lay; with her father she’d always be —
But then one day the great war broke out and the father was told to go;
The little girl pleaded — her father she needed.
She begged, cried and pleaded so:

CHORUS:
Don’t take my papa away from me, don’t leave me there all alone.
He has cared for me so tenderly, ever since mother was gone.
Nobody ever like him can be, no one can so with me play.
Don’t take my papa away from me; please don’t take papa away.

Her tender pleadings were all in vain, and her father went to the war.
He’ll never kiss her good night again, for he fell ‘mid the cannon’s roar.
Greater a soldier was never born, but his brave heart was pierced one day;
And as he was dying, he heard some one crying,
A girl’s voice from far away:

For sheet music and karaoke file click here.

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