The Max Hunter Folk Song Collection

May I Sleep In Your Barn Tonight Mister

Cat. #0667 (MFH #442) - As sung by Paralee Weddingon, Busch, Arkansas on February 4, 1969

VERSE 1
One night it was dark and was stormy
When along came a tramp in th rain
He was making his way to some station
To catch some long distance train

VERSE 2
May I sleep in your barn tonight, mister
It is cold lying out on th ground
An' th cold north wind it is whistling
An' I have no place to lay down

VERSE 3
O, I have no tobacco or matches
An' I'm sure that I'll do you no harm
I will tell you my story, kind mister
For it runs through my heart like a storm

VERSE 4
It was three years ago last summer
I shall never forget that sad day
When a stranger came out from th city
An' he said, that he wanted to stay

VERSE 5
Now, this man, was tall, strong and handsome
And he looked like a man that had wealth
An' he wanted to stay in th country
Said he wanted to stay for his health

VERSE 6
One night, as I came from my workshop
I was whistl'n and sing'n with joy
Expected a kind hearted welcome
From my sweet lov'n wife and my boy

VERSE 7
But what did I find but a letter
It was placed in th room on a stand
An' th moment my eyes fell upon it
I picked it right up in my hands

VERSE 8
Now, this note said my wife an' this stranger
They had left and had taken my son
Now, I wonder if God up in Heaven
Only knows what this stranger has done

VERSE 9
May I sleep in your barn tonight, mister
It is cold lie'n out on th ground
An' th cold north wind it is whistl'n
An' I have no place to lay down

Variants