A tiny turned up nose, two cheeks just like a rose
So sweet from head to toe, that little girl of mine
I had gone to visit the grave of a friend of mine
And as I walked through the graveyard
I noticed this man kneeling down by a grave of a child
And as I started to walk by
I noticed that he had a big red rose in his hand
And tears were streaming down his cheeks
I walk over, laid a hand on his shoulder
And started to talk to him
And in the course of the conversation
And in his broken English
This is the story as he told it to me
He said, "Mister, I walk-a-down the street-a today
And-a I pass-a by a big-a flower shop
I walk-a into the shop and I ask-a the man"
I said, "Boss, how much for one-a red rose?"
And-a he look-a at me with one big frown
And he said, "One-a dollar, please"
But a-by and-a by a swell dressed blond young-a lady walk-a in
And she said-a, "How much for-a one red rose?"
And-a he look-a at her with big-a smile
And he said-a, "Ten cent"
And I said-a, "Boss, how come-a you charge-a me
A dollar for the rose and you charge-a the lady only ten-a cents"
And he said-a, "Look, tell me why you want-a the rose
And maybe I give it to you for nothing"
And I said, "Boss, I'm hard-a working man
I work-a for the railroad
And I got-a little girl and her name is Rosa
Rosa is just about this-a high, Boss
Everyday when I come-a home from work
Little Rosa come-a running to meet her papa"
She throws her little arms around my neck
And say, "Papa" and I say, "Rosa"
But one-a day, Boss I come home from work
And I don't-a see Rosa
I look down by the railroad tracks and I see-a one big-a crowd
I go down and push-a the crowd this way
And I push-a the crowd that way
And there at my feet lay my little Rosa
And that's why I want-a the Rose-a Boss
I want to put them on my little Rosa grave
The man he don't-a say nothing
But he pick the biggest and reddest rose and he give-a to me
And I said, "Thank-a you, Boss, I thank you very much"
And though she's gone, you see she's the world to me
To me she'll always be, that's little girl of mine