One time in Alexandria, in wicked Alexandria
Where nights were wild with revelry and life was but a game,
There lived, so the report is, an adventuress and courtesan
The pride of Alexandria, and Thais was her name.
(Break: Naughty Lady of Shady Lane)
Nearby, in peace and piety, avoiding all society
There dwelt a band of holy men who’d made their refuge there,
And in the desert’s solitude, they spurned all earthly folly to
Devote their lives to holy works, to fasting and to prayer.
(Break: Break, Oh Mighty Fortress)
Now one monk whom I solely mention of this band of holy men
Was known as Athaneal, he was famous near and far.
At fasting bouts and prayer, with him, none other could compare with him,
At plain and fancy praying he could do the course in par.
(Break: God of Our Fathers)
One day while sleeping heavily, from wrestling with the Devil he
Had gone to bed exhausted, though the sun was shining still,
He had a vision Freudian, and though he was annoyed he an-
Alyzed it in the well-known style of Doctors Jung and Brill.
(Break: Dr. Freud)
He dreamed of Alexandria, of wicked Alexandria,
A crowd of men was cheering in a manner rather rude.
And Athaneal glancing there at Thais who was dancing there
Observed her do the shimmy, in what artists call The Nude!
(Break: Samson and Delilah)
Said he,”This dream fantastical disturbs my thoughts monastical,
Some unsuppressed desire, I fear, has found my monkish cell.
I blushed up to the hat o’ me to view that girl’s anatomy,
I’ll go to Alexandria and save her soul from Hell!”
(Break: Onward, Christian Soldiers)
So, pausing not to wonder where he’d put his winter underwear
He quickly packed his evening clothes, a toothbrush and a vest,
To guard against exposure he threw in some woolen hosiery
And bidding all the boys Adieu, he started on his quest.
(Break: Happy Wanderer)
The monk, though warned and fortified, was deeply shocked and mortified
To find, on his arrival, wild debauchery in sway.
While some were in a stupor, sent by booze of more than two per-
cent, the rest were all behaving in a most immoral way.
(Break: Passengers Will Please Refrain)
Said he to Thais, “Pardon me, Although this job is hard on me,
I’ve got to put you straight to what I came out here to tell:
What’s all this boozing getting you? Cut out this pie-eyed retinue,
Let’s hit the road together, kid, and save your soul from Hell!”
(Break: Onward Christian Soldiers)
Although this bold admonishment caused Thais some astonishment,
She quickly answered, “Say! You said a heaping mouthful, Bo!
This burg’s a frost, I’m telling you; the brand of hooch they’re selling you
Ain’t like the stuff you used to get, so let’s pack up and go!”
(Break: Blowing in the Wind)
So off from Alexandria, from wicked Alexandria
Across the desert sands they go, beneath the burning sun.
Till Thais, parched and sweltering, finds refuge in the sheltering
Seclusion of a convent in the habit of a nun.
And now the monk is terrified to find his fears are verified,
His holy vows of chastity have cracked beneath the strain!
Like one who has a jag on, he cries out in grief and agon-
y, “I’ll sell my soul to see her do the shimmy once again.”
(Break: Snake Dance)
Alas! His pleadings amorous, though passionate and clamorous
Have come too late. The courtesan has danced her final dance.
Said he, “Now that’s a joke on me, for that there dame to croak on me;
I never should have passed her up the time I had the chance!”