When The Old Cow Calves
I 'm poor, mister ; my friends are gone,
And the people on yonder farm
Are cold ; and ever from dark to dawn ;
There 's nothing to keep me warm.
I owe it, mister ; I won't gainsay you :
You hold the law I must obey you ;
Oh, mister, wait and I will repay you
When the old cow calves !
Do n't take her away : she 's bread and life
And food for me and mine ;
Oh, would you draw a cruel knife
And hurt a child of thine !
Keep the black bailiff from my gate ;
A hope, oh usurer, is my estate ;
Mister, will you but kindly wait
Till the cow calves?