Australian Folk Songs

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Shickered (1912)

When a man admits he's shickered,
You can bet he's drunk a treat,
And it's ten to one he's liquored
Till the liquor's grabbed his feet;
For his steps are quite erratic
As he sallies down the road,
While his breath is aromatic
With the spirits in his load.

He is in the best of humors,
And lie says that all is right
That unpleasant things are rumours
Which will never come to light;
For the country is a daisy,
He will tell you with a grin,
And for those who are not lazy
There is always plenty "tin."

He will speak with much decision
Of our forces for a war,
And he'll dwell on "great precision"
When our men march to the fore;
And we're going to lick creation
From the east right to the west,
While there'll never be cessations
Of the things that are the best.

That is when a man is shickered
Ere he goes to bed at night--
That's before the strength has flickered
From the stuff that made him tight.
But you meet him in the morning,
When the alcohol is dead,
And his face gives out a warning
Of the trouble in his head.

He won't stop to brag of greatness
As he hurries off to work,
For his boss has told him lateness
Is a thing he ought to shirk;
And he's lost the joyous manner
That he had with him last night,
As he searches for a "tanner"
That he hopes will set him right.

Harry Stafford


From the NSW Newspaper the Forbes Advocate 1 Nov 1912 p. 2.


australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory