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Jimmie Higgins eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 312 pages of information about Jimmie Higgins.
Bring the guns from Bethlehem, by way of old New York;
Bring the beans from Boston, and don’t leave out the pork;
Bring a load of soda-pop and pull the grape-juice cork—­

              While we are canning the Kaiser. (Chorus)

Come you men from Dixieland, you lumberjacks of Maine;
Come you Texas cowboys, and you farmers of the plain;
Florida to Oregon, we boast the Yankee strain—­

              While we are canning the Kaiser. (Chorus)

Now we’ve started on the job we mean to put it through;
Ship the kings and kaisers all, and make the world anew;
Clear the way for common folk, for men like me and you—­

              While we are canning the Kaiser.

Chorus

Oh, Bill!  Oh, Bill!  We’re on the job to-day! 
Oh, Bill!  Oh, Bill!  We’ll seal you so you’ll stay! 
We’ll put you up in ginger in the good old Yankee way—­
While we are canning the Kaiser.

CHAPTER XX

JIMMIE HIGGINS TAKES A SWIM

I

You did not stop very long in the mobilization-camp, for the arrival of your train was timed with the arrival of the ship on which you were to sail.  You had a meal, sometimes you slept a night, then you marched to the docks.  Nor was there much of the traditional “sweet sorrow” about the departure of these great fleets; the weeping mothers and sisters had not been notified to be present, and the ladies of the canteen-service had given coffee and sandwiches, cigarettes and chocolate, to so many tens of thousands that they had forgotten about tears.  It was like the emigration of a nation; the part of America that was now on the other side was so large that nobody would need to feel homesick.

Jimmie’s embarking was done at night; on the long, covered piers, lighted by arc-lights, the soldiers set down their kits and stood about, munching food, singing songs, and keeping one another’s wits sharpened for battle.  They filtered on board, and then without a light or a sound the vessel stole down the long stretches of the harbour, and out to sea.  One never knew at what hour the enemy submarines might attempt a raid on the American side, so the entrance to the harbour was mined and blockaded, a narrow passage being opened when the ships passed through.

When morning came the convoy was out at sea, amid glorious green rollers, and Jimmie Higgins was lying in his narrow berth, cursing the fates that had lured him, the monster of Militarism into whose clutches he had been snared.  The army medical service had a serum to prevent small-pox and another to prevent typhoid, but they had nothing for sea-sickness as yet; so for the first four days of the trip Jimmie wished that a submarine would come and end his misery once for all.

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