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Box of Candy and a Piece of Fruit

G D C G Tacet C No Christmas gift I've ever come by, G Whether trains or homemade socks, D Has haunted me like one sweet orange G And some candy in a box. G7 C Several years ago at Christmas, G I remember it so well, D I spent a very lonely Christmas G Inside a lonely prison cell.

I'd been working in Toronto
In a folk song coffee shop.
It was hot and it was smoky;
I just didn't know how hot.

I had a run-in with the Mounties,
RCMP was their name.
They didn't look like Sergeant Preston,
And they didn't act the same.

They had a stack of wads and warrants
Big enough to make a book,
And they were mad about my smokin'
And some other stuff I took.

And so the magistrate presided,
And he set a monstrous bail.
I said, "Judge, I stand here busted."
I got hustled off to jail.

The next four months were quite a party,
Lots of time to meditate.
It's a different world in prison;
It's a different kind of wait.

It was early in November,
I first heard them tell the tale
About the Sally Army's visit
Every Christmas time in jail.

A great annual occasion,
A great yuletide salute.
Silent Night and Seedy Santa,
Box of candy and a piece of fruit.

Yes, a box of Christmas candy
And a navel orange to boot.
I heard the old cons talk about it:
Box of candy and a piece of fruit.

Till I could almost taste the candy,
I could almost smell the fruit.
Every day a little closer,
Box of candy and a piece of fruit.

Till I had a great misfortune,
Worse than all my time in jail:
Twenty-third day of December,
Lousy judge lowered my bail!

He did in the Christmas spirit;
My friends and family raised the loot,
Never knowing I'd be losing
My box of candy and my piece of fruit!

So, Virginia, if there's a Santa,
And if Santa ain't too mean,
He owes me a box of candy
And a fuckin' tangerine!

(Words and music by Tom Paxton and Bob Gibson, 1979)

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