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Lyr Req: The Poopampareno (cante fable)

A. Carter 17 Dec 97 - 12:47 PM
Jim Dixon 21 Feb 05 - 10:37 PM
Jim Dixon 06 Dec 10 - 04:21 PM
Jim Dixon 07 Dec 10 - 06:42 AM
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Subject: Lyric Request: Man treed by bear, calls dogs
From: A. Carter
Date: 17 Dec 97 - 12:47 PM

Copied from generic thread:

Subject: RE: Lyric search From: atcarter@db1.cc.rochester.edu Date: 17-Dec-97 - 11:39 AM

I'm looking for the title and lyrics of a song my (deceased) father sang when I was a child. As I recall, the song concerns a man who goes out for a walk without his dogs. The man is treed by a bear and calls the dogs to come and save him. The chorus includes the phrase "Your master's almost gone." I believe one of the dogs is named Pampoo. My father was born in Kentucky and I imagine that the song is Appalachian. Does anyone out there know it?

Cheers, A. Carter


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Man treed by bear, calls dogs
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 21 Feb 05 - 10:37 PM

refresh
(but notice how old this request is)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Man treed by bear, calls dogs
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 06 Dec 10 - 04:21 PM

This "song"—which I suspect is actually a cante-fable—seems to be found in two books:

Coyote Wisdom by J. Frank Dobie, (Texas Folklore Society, 1938), page 254.

A Treasury of Southern Folklore by B. A. Botkin (Crown Publishers, 1949), page 518.

Neither of those is completely viewable online, but Google shows this much:

Here, Sambo! And Ringo!
Your master's almost gone!
And a poo-pam and a poo,
And a poo-pam and a po-o-o!

This time the dogs barely heard him. They looked at the fence. ...


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE POOPAMPARENO (cante fable)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 07 Dec 10 - 06:42 AM

Copied, with footnote, from A Treasury of Southern Folklore ed. B. A. Botkin (New York: Bonanza Books, 1980, copyright 1949), page 518:


THE POOPAMPARENO

A man who was a great hunter got to thinking he could do without the faithful dogs that had always helped him. Their names were Sambo and Ringo, and one day he left them shut up behind a high picket fence and went off into the woods alone. Before he left, he put a pan of milk in the pen for the dogs, but they felt so bad about being left behind they didn't go near it for a long time. When they did try to drink the milk, they found that it had turned to blood.

Now, the hunter was walking boldly through the woods when suddenly he found himself face to face with the Poopampareno! There was only one place it could be hurt, and that was right under the chin. Anywhere else a bullet would bounce off from its skin like a rubber ball. So it's no wonder the hunter threw down his gun and ran for his life.

Just in time he reached a tall pine tree, the tallest in that section of the woods. He didn't stop climbing until he was at the tip-top. When he looked down, his blood ran cold. The Poopampareno's lips were drawn back from his terrible saw teeth and he was grinning at the hunter like this. (Register exultant malice.) Then he began to saw with his teeth. (Imitate sound of saw.) Through the bark he sawed, and into the wood. Then the hunter called to his dogs as loud as he could:

Here, Sambo! And Ringo!
Your master's almost gone!
And a poo-pam and a poo,
And a poo-pam and a po-o-o!

The dogs were far away. They thought they heard something but couldn't be sure. The milk in their bowl was blood. They feared their master was in danger. They looked at the high fence and wished they could jump over it.

When the hunter called, the Poopampareno looked up at the hunter and grinned like this. (Repeat exultant grin.) Then he began to saw harder than ever. (Repeat sawing sounds, turning head from side to side.) The tree began to tremble. Again the hunter called, louder than before:

Here, Sambo! And Ringo!
Your master's almost gone!
And a poo-pam and a poo,
And a poo-pam and a po-o-o!

This time the dogs barely heard him. They looked at the fence. It was too high to jump, and there was no hole anywhere. Far out in the woods the Poopampareno was taking his time, but the tree was now more than half cut through. It would soon fall. So the hunter called louder than ever:

Here, Sambo! And Ringo!
Your master's almost gone!
And a poo-pam and a poo,
And a poo-pam and a po-o-o!

This time the dogs heard their master plainly. They backed off as far as they could, and together they jumped. They cleared those high pickets by a scratch. Then neck and neck they raced into the woods. Just as the tree was about to fall, they tore up to the Poopampareno, and they had him by the throat before he could take his teeth out of the trunk.

By Julia Beazley. From Coyote Wisdom, edited by J. Frank Dobie, Mody C. Boatright, and Harry H. Ransom, Texas Folk-Lore Society Publications, Number XIV, pp. 252-254. Copyright, 1938, by Texas Folk-Lore Society. Austin.

The story of the terrible and wonderful poopampareno I heard form the Reverend Mr. Werlein, rector of Eastwood Community Church in Houston, who told it at a children's story hour. As he told the story, with action finely suited, he gave the line, "Here Sambo! And Ring!" a kind of "Old Black Joe" tune.—J. B.


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