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​Bill Mason's Bride

This song is by Loudon Wainwright III, features Chris Thile and appears on the album High Wide & Handsome: The Charlie Poole Project (2009).

Half an hour till train time and sir
And a fearful dark time, too
Take a look at the switch lights, Tom
Fetch in a stick when you're through

On time? Well, yes, I guess so
She left the last station all right
Bet she'll come around the curve a-flyin'
Bill Mason's on tonight

You know Bill? He's an engineer
Been on the road most of his life
I'll never forget the mornin'
He married himself a wife

Bill hadn't been married an hour
When up come a message from Kress
Orderin' Bill to go down there
And bring out the night express

Maggie sat down by the window
To wait for the night express
And sir, if she hadn't 'a done so
She'd 'a been a widow, I guess

For it must 'a been about midnight
When the mill hands left the Ridge
Down came those drunken devils
And tore off a rail from the bridge

But Maggie heard them workin'
And guessed there was somethin' wrong
And in less than fifteen minutes
Bill's train would be along

She couldn't 'a come here to tell us
A mile, it wouldn't 'a done
So she just grabbed a lantern
And made for the bridge on the run

By God, Bill saw the signal
And he stopped the night express
And he found his Maggie cryin'
On the track in her weddin' dress

Cryin' and laughin' for joy, sir
And holdin' on to the light
Well, here's the train, goodbye sir
Bill Mason's on time tonight

Written by:

Bret Harte; Dick Connette; Loudon Wainwright III