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The Army

From The Times Dispatch, September 30, 1913. By Roy K. Moulton.

Army life is simply grand, so a man would understand,
    Judging from the pictures that they send from Washington.
Advertising is immense, posters stuck upon the fence
    Get the youngster to believing that it’s only fun.
Soldiers do just as they please; live a life of perfect ease,
    Get a lot of travel that does not cost them a cent.
Naught to do but sleep and eat. Joy of living is complete;
    Not a moment’s worry over clothing, food and rent.

Propositions look all right, army doesn’t even fight;
    Uncle Sam has got no scrap with any foreign power.
Soldiers simply loaf a lot with no chance of getting shot,
    Lying in their hammocks reading novels by the hour.
Hoeing taters on the farm loses all its old-time charm,
    Bill Jones packs his satchel and he hikes out for the town.
Horny handed son of toil leaves the old parental soil,
    Bound for ease and freedom and perhaps in time renown.

Bill, with other raw recruits, had to black the captain’s boots,
    Curry horses, scour the pans, act as chambermaid.
Drill all day with all his might, do guard duty late at night—
    That’s the way in times of peace the army game is played.
There’s no loafing ‘neath the trees; hard to find these hours of ease
    That the artist pictured in the poster on the fence.
There is not a chance to shirk, army life is much like work,
    Same as any other walk of life in that one sense.

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