- Year Published: 1913
- Language: English
- Country of Origin: United States of America
- Source: Dunbar, P.L. (1913). The Complete Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar. New York: Dodd, Mead, and Company.
- Flesch–Kincaid Level: 6.5
- Word Count: 325
Dunbar, P. (1913). Circumstances Alter Cases. Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadow (Lit2Go Edition). Retrieved June 24, 2021, from
Dunbar, Paul Laurence. "Circumstances Alter Cases." Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadow. Lit2Go Edition. 1913. Web. <>. June 24, 2021.
Paul Laurence Dunbar, "Circumstances Alter Cases," Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadow, Lit2Go Edition, (1913), accessed June 24, 2021,.
Tim Murphy’s gon’ walkin’ wid Maggie O’Neill,
If I was her muther, I’d frown on sich foolin’,
I’m sure it’s unmutherlike, darin’ an’ wrong
To let a gyrul hear tell the sass an’ the song
Of every young felly that happens along,
An’ Murphy, the things that’s be’n sed of his doin’,
‘Tis a cud that no dacent folks wants to be chewin’,
If he came to my door wid his cane on a twirl,
Fur to thry to make love to you, Biddy, my girl,
Ah, wouldn’t I send him away wid a whirl,
They say the gossoon is indecent and dirty,
In spite of his dressin’ so.
Let him dress up ez foine ez a king or a queen,
Let him put on more wrinkles than ever was seen,
You’ll be sure he’s no match for my little colleen,
Faith the two is comin’ back an’ their walk is all over,
‘Twas a pretty short walk fur to take wid a lover,
Why, I believe that Tim Murphy’s a kumin’ this way,
Ah, Biddy jest look at him steppin’ so gay,
I’d niver belave what the gossipers say,
He’s turned in the gate an’ he’s coming a–caperin’,
Go, Biddy, go quick an’ put on a clane apern,
Be quick as ye kin fur he’s right at the dure;
Come in, master Tim, fur ye’re welcome I’m shure.
We were talkin’ o’ ye jest a minute before.