Hole in the Bucket by Spearhead Narrative tenses

Narrative Tenses/ Issue of Homelessness and Begging
Version 1
Cut up and get students to arrange the story. Listen and check
I work 9 to 5 but it starts in the p.m.
and I love the sunrise so I step out in the a.m.
the street is black and shiny from the early nightly raining
the glory of the light it brings evaporation
morning’s fresh oxygen cleanest
I take a deep hit help my mind stay the greenest
I’m already wake so I’m not drinking coffee
don’t wanna cigarette ’cause it’s a form of slavery
walking to the store ’cause I need a few items
the sun heats the blood like a hit of vitamins
need to buy some food and some shampoo for my dreads
can’t remember why but I need a spool of thread
Man with dirty dreads, steps around the corner
he asks me for a dime, a nickel or a quarter
I don’t have any change so I’m stepping along
and as I’m walking past he sings to me a song…
The day is picking up cause I’m humming his song
the buses and the people all keep moving along
to the shopkeeper I say “what’s up?”
and I’m thinking about the man who’s holding up the cup

I pay for all the stuff and get a pocketful of change
should I give it to the man’s the question in my brain
What’s gonna happen if I give the man a dime?
I don’t wanna pay for another brother’s wine
What’s gonna happen if I give the man a quarter?
will he find a dealer and try to place an order?
what’s gonna happen if I give the man a nickel
will he buy some food or some pork that’s been pickled?
I’m not responsible for the man’s depression
how can I find compassion in the midst of recession?
How come all these questions keep fucking with my head
and I still can’t remember why I need a spool of thread.


He’s staring in my eyes just as I’m walking past
I’m trying to avoid him cause I know he’s gonna ask
me about the coinage that is in my pocket
But I don’t know if I should put it in his bucket
walk right past him to think about it more
back at the crib I’m opening up the door
a pocketful of change it don’t mean a lot to me
my cup is half full but his is empty

I put back on my cap and I start heading back
I reach into my pocket and I have a heart attack
well as I’m digging deep I scream “oh no!”
there’s nothing in the pocket but a great big hole

While I was busy thinking if he would buy smack
the jingle in my pocket it had slipped through the cracks
no one has the change and it’s fucking up my head
But now I know the reason why I had to buy the thread!
Hole in the Bucket by Spearhead- Narrative Tenses
Version 2

This song is the story of a man who meets a beggar in the streets of New York. Try to guess what order the following events happen in and number them (the first two are already labelled)

_____He walks towards the shop
_____He remembers that he has a hole in his pocket
2.    He enjoys the sunny morning
_____He buys some thread
_____He decides to give money to the beggar
______A man asks him for money
1.     He finishes work
______He reaches into his pocket
_____ He goes into the shop
_______ He meets the beggar again
_______ He thinks about all the bad things the beggar might do with the money

Listen and check
Read the paragraph below to help
Fill in the gaps with the correct tenses
Listen again and check


While I __________________ (think) if he would buy smack,
the jingle in my pocket _______________ (slip) through the cracks.
No one has the change and it’s messing up my head,
but now I ___________ (know) the reason why I _________ (have to) buy the thread


PDF for easy saving and printing: Spearhead Hole in the Bucket narrative tenses

Past tenses games, worksheets and songs

Song worksheets for EFL learners

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