The Drinker is the Guilty One

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Nov 21, 1923

By Walt Mason


Some four and twenty thirsty men
went to an eastern boozing ?en
and lapped up bowls of deadly gin,
and when they stowed the stuff within,
they went off to their divers homes
with no foreboding in their domes
that they would never drink again
in any joint or boozing ken,
that they were bound for kingdom come,
where there is no illicit rum.
But in a few brief hours they all
were dead of poison alcohol.
Men read the story as they chewed
their breakfast prunes and other food,
and said, “The guys who sell such rot
should all be taken out and shot.
The skates who make such liquid doom
should all be hurried to the tomb.”
This is the feeling that prevails
when men peruse such dreadful tales;
the bootleg vendors all should sleep
forever in the donjon keep.
The men who buy the wretched stuff
have suffered punishment enough,
upon their rest we can’t encroach
with admonition and reproach;
but they were much to blame, methinks —
as much as those who sold the drinks.
All men must know that when they buy
and drink the seething gin and rye,
the hocused wine, unhallowed rum,
they are inviting death to come.
They have been warned a million times
against the hooch purveyor’s crimes,
they have been told in terms refined
that they’ll be killed or stricken blind
if they persist in quaffing bowls
of liquor in illegal holes.
If one bootlegger will not sell,
they know another passing well,
they’re bound to have the awful dope
that’s fatal as a hangman’s rope.
And so when all is said and done,
the drinker is the guilty one.

The Lincoln State Journal (Lincoln, Nebraska) Nov 21, 1928

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Dec 23, 1930

Appleton Post Crescent (Appleton, Wisconsin) Jan 12, 1923

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