How Breitmann became President
on the Bicycle Ticket

(With all apologies to C.G. Leland)  

Der Americanische bolitig,
   Mit all dat bolitig means,
Defelops on lines of cleafage
   More mixed ash a pag of peans;
Und a man must follow his barty,
   His knife und his life in his hand,
But dis is how Hans vas Bresident
   Of der whole of Yangee land.

He go to der same old circus,
   He hear der favorite son,
He see der panners flyin',
   For der same old sine Quay non.
Dey safe und betray der gountry
   Not more dan a hoondert dimes,
Till Breitmann capture Ameriga
   Mit dese earth-schoopin' rhymes:

"Verdamt be der minor McKinley, 
   Likewise der Major Reed.
I speak in der name of Schnitzerl,
   Dot make der philosopede. *
De philosopede she killdt him,
   Boot he say pefore he die:
'Dere is more in der vheelin' pizness
   Dan meet der casual eye.

" 'Vheel auf: my soul to her Maker!
   Vatch out! For she come again.
Bestrident a batent safety,
   Mit a plue self-oilin' chain;
Und dot vision of fear und vonder,
   In der after-coming night,
Shall guide you to better mansions—
   Und I guess dey are bainted white.

" 'I see der feet of a nation
   Dot nefer touch der groundt—
Der legs of die noble madchen
   All wafin' roundt und roundt!
Ten million bells are ringin'—
   Ten million lamps are lit—
Der holy anchels gall me,
   Und Breitmann you are it!

"Der Schnitzerl he is buried,
   Der vision it is gone;
But I see der legs of der madchen,
   Der madchen mit ploomers on—
Dey wafe from der sands of Bortlandt,
   To der Oregonian pines,
Und so I defelop my bolicy
   On strictly picycle lines.

"Oh plind and jolted people.
   Dot faint beneat' your loads
Der foorst-lasd need of our nation
   Is roads—und roads—und roads!
Dey safe more money on haulin'
   Dan efen Grofer can spend:
Und dey are der farmer's banker,
   Und dey are de lofer's friend.

"Dink of our Youth und Peauty,
   n Indian-file dey crawl,
Most full of human longin's
   But hangin' on for a fall!
Make smooth deir path und broader—
   Der girl's peside der man's—
Dis is der only certain way
   Of makin' Amerigans!"

Den Reed, who is shoost beginnin'
   On a bicycle built for—ten,
He feel he haf slipped his pedal,
   Und so he instruct his men.
He can cow der House in her anger,
   He can curb der House in her pride,
Boot vhen he meet mit an avalanche,
   Tom Reed can let her slide.

"Der goot road pring der farmer-man,
   Dot pring der pedder crop,
Dot pring his wife, dot pring die nurse,
   Und die nurse-girl bring der cop;
Und der cop he pring der bier-saloon,
   Dot buys der Legislate—
Und so we gits to der workin'-blant
   Of a Sofereign Gristian State.

"I stand for honest highways,
   By honest labor made,
On State abbrobriations
   Mit Federal grants-in-aid;
Und dot means blenty of gontracts
   Ash a child may oonderstand,
Or, priefly, stealin' und veelin'
   Troo der length und der breadth of der land!"

Dis pankrupt der little McKinley—
   He vas like Napoleon,
He hear der Deutscher's gannon
   Und know dot his shance vas gone—
For in bolitigs ash in poker,
   Der greater surprises der less,
Und "St. Helena und Blazes!"
   Vas McKinley's last address.

"Now dis is my single bromise,
   For I don't abbrove of deals,
Boot—put me into der White House
   Und I lowers der price on vheels;
We moost crush der bloated monopolies,
   Mit all deir accursed gain,
Und, py shings, if dey will not tumble
   We moost vheel in blood to der chain!"

Dot dickle der Western benches,
   Where der winds und der words haf Waite,
Where foorst dey borrow on mortgage
   Und den dey Peffericate;
But der Eastern delegates snicker—
   Dey know how he git der dust—
(Nota Pene—Hans vas nominee
   Of der Central Bicycle Trust.)

"Now—ash to der Silver Question
   Dot so is searchin' our hearts,
I peliefe in der workshop magsim
   Of inderchangeable barts;
Der wheel you haf puy in Boston
   In Denver you can repair—
We moost make it so mit our dollar
   For der best goes aferywhere.

"On alien immicration
   My blatform is simple und soundt—
Shoost help dem into deir saddles
   Und let dem wapple around;
So der Bole und der Finn und der Dago—
   Dey are all of dem crazy to ride—
Bicks oop some points of each oder
   Und der rule of der road peside.

"In der matter of foreign gollisions
   Und indernational jars,
Ardillery cuts der chausees,
   So I don't pelieve in wars;
Und it vould not help our gountry
   At der close of a century run,
To gear der vheels of brogress
   A la guerre of sixty-one.

"On afery oder issue
   Dot man or der Teufel haf frame,
From dariffs to Cuban cake-walks,
   My answer is shoost der same;
We moost not scorch in der cities,
   Nor drafel mitout our light;
We moost go to der left in passin'
   Und in meetin' keep to der right.

"Finale, und in gonclusion
   (I am anxious to meet my end),
I stand for der L. A. W.
   Und all she comprehend;
Which is Law if you go by der spellin',
   Majistic, unbought und clean,
Boot yet, for der weaker brethren
   Mit liddle let-oops petween."

Like a wafe dot exalt der nations
   On der vild Atlantic shweep,
Ven der Dutch are sick in der steerage
   Und deep is callin' to deep.
Mit der roar of a young volcano
   Und a yell dot shplit der heafen,
Dey nominated der Breitmann
   Ash der model for '97!

So Hans he dank dem (et cetera),
   Und pefore der broceedin's close
Der foorst crate national issue
   Was opened under his nose—
For der foorst crate national issue
   Is: "Shendlemans, vhat you dakes?"
Und der meetin' sung "Hail Columbia" 
   Ingludin' all oder makes!


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            Herr Schniterl make a ph'losopede,
               Von of der pullyest kind;
            It vent mitout a vheel in front,
               And hadn't none pehind.

            *("Schnitzerl's Philosopede."  
            The Breitmann Ballads, C.G. Leland) 
             ________________