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Landlord's Lullaby, song lyrics

Song: Landlord's Lullaby
Lyrics: Maxine Parshall(2) and Charlie Ipcar(3)

Music: to the tune of "Hobo's Lullaby" by Goebel Reeves
Year: 1972(1)
Genre: Folk
Country: USA

Close your eyes my sleepy tenants,
As you sign your rent contract,
Kiss goodbye your rent deposit,
For you'll never get it back.

Go to sleep my little tenants,
Though the gas is leaking fast,
Lay your head upon the pillow,
This night's sleep may be your last.

Though the roof is rather leaky,
And paper's peeling off the wall,
And there's plaster on your bedspread,
Be thankful there's a wall at all.
This song was originally posted on

I know inspectors cause you trouble,
They cause trouble everywhere,
But when you die and go to heaven,
You'll find no inspectors there.
This song was originally posted on

Though the furnace is erratic,
And the wiring seems decayed,
Come the morn you'll be evicted,
And your homestead blown away.



1 - Originally found posted on

2 - Maxine Parshall was apparently a Lansing, Michigan tenant, since we found a letter she co-singed in a 1967 copy of Michigan State University's State News, student newspaper, in 1967.

3 - Charles Ipcar an East Lansing Michigan tenant, with a broken furnace according to Michigan State News, East Lansing, Thursday, November 9, 1972, p.3.

4 - We don't know if this is the origin of the song but this occured a few months before the song was written. Two Deaths in Brooklyn Laid to Gas Leak in House, New York Times excerpt, February 11, 1972.