By the old Moulmein Pagoda, lookin′ eastward to the sea, There′s a Burma girl a-settin′, and I know she thinks o′ me; For the wind is in the palm-trees, and the temple-bells they say: "Come you back, you British soldier; come you back to Mandalay!" Come you back to Mandalay, Where the old Flotilla lay: Can′t you ′ear their paddles chunkin′ from Rangoon to Mandalay? On the road to Mandalay, Where the flyin′-fishes play, An′ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ′crost the Bay! ′Er petticoat was yaller an′ ′er little cap was green, An′ ′er name was Supi-yaw-lat, jes′ the same as Theebaw′s Queen, An′ I seed her first a-smokin′ of a whackin′ white cheroot, An′ a-wastin′ Christian kisses on an ′eathen idol′s foot: Bloomin′ idol made o′mud, Wot they called the Great Gawd Budd, Plucky lot she cared for idols when I kissed ′er where she stud! On the road to Mandalay . . . When the mist was on the rice-fields an′ the sun was droppin′ slow, She′d git ′er little banjo an′ she′d sing "Kulla-lo-lo!" With ′er arm upon my shoulder an′ ′er cheek agin′ my cheek We useter watch the steamers an′ the hathis pilin′ teak. Elephints a-pilin′ teak In the sludgy, squdgy creek, Where the silence ′ung that ′eavy you was ′arf afraid to speak! On the road to Mandalay . . . But that′s all shove be′ind me, long ago an′ fur away, An′ there ain′t no ′busses runnin′ from the Bank to Mandalay; An′ I′m learnin′ ′ere in London what the ten-year soldier tells: "If you′ve ′eard the East a-callin′, you won′t never ′eed naught else." No! you won′t ′eed nothin′ else But them spicy garlic smells, An′ the sunshine an′ the palm-trees an′ the tinkly temple-bells; On the road to Mandalay . . . I am sick o′ wastin′ leather on these gritty pavin′-stones, An′ the blasted Henglish drizzle wakes the fever in my bones; Tho′ I walks with fifty ′ousemaids outer Chelsea to the Strand, An′ they talks a lot o′ lovin′, but wot do they understand? Beefy face an′ grubby ′and, Law! wot do they understand? I′ve a neater, sweeter maiden in a cleaner, greener land! On the road to Mandalay . . . Ship me somewheres east of Suez, where the best is like the worst, Where there aren′t no Ten Commandments an′ a man can raise a thirst; For the temple-bells are callin′, an′ it′s there that I would be, By the old Moulmein Pagoda, looking lazy at the sea; On the road to Mandalay, Where the old Flotilla lay, With our sick beneath the awnings when we went to Mandalay! On the road to Mandalay, Where the flyin′-fishes play, An′ the dawn comes up like thunder outer China ′crost the Bay!