Australian Folk Songs

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Lambing Down

(Supplied by N.S.W.)

I'm a broken-hearted shearer, I'm ashamed to show my face,
The way that I got lambed down is a sin and a disgrace;
I put a cheque togother, and thought that it would do,
So I just slipped into Orange for to spend a week or two.

I thought I was no flat, so resolved to cut it fat;
I dressed myself up in my best, put a poultice round my hat;
I went to have a nobbler at a certain house in town,
Where the barmaid she was cautioned for to lamb a fellow down.

I would get up in the morning to have a glass of stout;
She cost me many a shilling, for she was in every shout.
She would toss me up at Yankee Grab, and keep me on the booze:
But somehow or the other I was always bound to lose.

My money getting short I resolved to know my fate;
I asked this pretty barmaid if she would be my mate,
When she said, "Young man, on my feelings don't encroach,
I'm a decent married woman, and my husband drives the coach."

I had two-and-six in silver and half-a-bar of soap,
A box of Cockle's pills and a pot of Holloway's;
I thought to turn a farmer and grow pumpkins near the town,
But she squashed all my pumpkins when she had me lambed down.

I had two old shirts, but they were all in rags;
A pair of moleskin trousers and a hat without a crown.
This was my ten years' gathering when clearing out of town;
But it's nothing when you're used to it to do a lambing down.


From The Queenslander 13 October 1894.

Many thanks to Rob Willis for suggesting this song for the collection


australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory