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The Cremation Of Sam Mcgee chords - Kirk Kemptner

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Kirk Kemptner Sheet music
                THE CREMATION OF SAM McGEE
   lyrics:  Robert William Service
   music and arrangement:  Kirk Kemptner

capo: 2nd fret

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
That would make your blood run cold;
     C                    G
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
          Dm                    Am
But the queerest they ever did see
     Dm              E     E7   Am
Was that night I cremated Sam McGee.

Now Sam McGee was from Tennessee, 
where the cotton bowls and blows.
Why he left his home in the South to roam 
'round the Pole, God only knows.
He was always cold, but the land of gold 
held him in a spell;
Though he'd often say that he'd sooner live in hell.

On a Christmas Day we were mushing our way 
over the Dawson trail.
Talk of your cold! through the parka's fold 
it stabbed like a driven nail.
If our eyes we'd close, our lashes froze 
till sometimes we couldn't see;
but the only one to complain was Sam McGee.

And that very night, as we lay packed tight
in our robes beneath the snow,
the dogs were fed, and the stars o'erhead 
      E                E7
were dancing heel and toe,
He turned to me, and "Cap," says he, 
"I'll cash in this trip, I guess;
  Dm                    F              E   E7
promise me you won't refuse my last request."

Well, he seemed so low that I couldn't say no; 
then he says in a moan:
"It's the cursed cold, and it's got right hold 
till I'm chilled down to the bone.
Yet 'tain't being dead -- it's my awful dread 
of the icy grave that pains;
promise me you'll cremate my last remains."

A friends last need is a thing to heed, 
so I swore I would not fail;
And we started on at the streak of dawn; 
but God! he looked so pale.
He crouched in the sleigh, and he raved all day 
of his home in Tennessee;
And that night a corpse was all left of Sam McGee.

There wasn't a breath in that land of death, 
and I hurried, horror-driv'n,
With a corpse half hid that I couldn't get rid, 
'cause of a promise given;
It was lashed to the sleigh, and it seemed to say:
"You may tax your brawn and brains,
But it's up to you to cremate those last remains."

Now a promise made is a debt unpaid, 
and the trail has its stern code.
In the days to come, though my lips grew dumb, 
in my heart I cursed that load.
The trail was bad, and I felt half mad, 
but I swore I would not give in;
When I looked down ole Sam was wearin' a grin.

Till I came to the marge of Lake Lebarge, 
and a derelict there lay;
It was jammed in the ice, but I saw in a trice 
she was called the "Alice May".
And I looked at it, and I thought a bit, 
and I looked at my frozen chum;
Then "there," said I, "is your cre-ma-tor-eum."

Some planks I tore from the cabin floor,
and I lit the boiler fire;
Some coal I found that was lying around, 
        E              E7
and I heaped the fuel higher;
      C                      G
the flames just soared, the furnace roared
         F7              Am        
such a blaze you seldom see;
     E                 E7             Am
And in those coals I stuffed in Sam McGee.

Then I made a hike, for I didn't like 
to hear him sizzle so;
And the heavens scowled, and the huskies howled, 
and the wind began to blow.
It was icy cold, but the hot sweat rolled 
down my cheeks, and I don't know why;
And the greasy smoke went streaking down the sky.

I do not know how long in the snow 
I wrestled with grisly fear;
But the stars came out and they danced about 
and again I ventured near;
I was sick with dread, but I bravely said: 
"I'll just take a peep inside".
I slowly opened the door wide.

And there sat Sam, looking cool and calm, 
in the heart of the furnace roar;
And he wore a smile you could see a mile, 
and he said: "Please close that door.
It's fine in here, but I gravely fear 
you'll let in the cold and storm --
Since I left Tennessee, it's the first time I've been warm."

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
That would make your blood run cold;
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
But the queerest they ever did see
Was that night I cremated Sam McGee.


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