The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #168402   Message #4080884
Posted By: rich-joy
25-Nov-20 - 12:25 AM
Thread Name: Mudcat Australia/NZ Songbook
Subject: RE: Rise Up Mudcat Songbook - Australia
For the folks who want more of the Aussie Warhorses, here’s a little diversion :


attrib. Lawson

I dreamed I shore in a shearing shed and it was a dream of joy
For every one of them rouseabouts was a girl dressed up as a boy
Dressed up like a page in a pantomime, and the prettiest ever I seen
They had flaxen hair, they had coal black hair, and every shade between,
There was short plump girls, there was tall slim girls, the prettiest ever I seen
They was four foot five, they was six feet high, and every shape between.

The shed was cooled by electric fans that were over every shute
The pens were of polished mahogany and everything else to suit
The huts had springs to the mattresses and the tucker was simply grand
And every night by the billabong we danced to a German band.

Our pay was the wool on the jumbuck's back, and we shore ‘til they was blue
The sheep were washed before they were shorn and the rams was perfumed too
And we all of us wept when the shed cut out, in spite of the long hot days
For every hour them girls waltzed in with whisky and beer on trays.

There was three of them girls to every chap and as jealous as could be
There was three of them girls to every chap and six of ‘em picked on me
We was draughting them for the homeward track and shearing them off like steam
When I woke with me head in the blazing sun - to find it a shearer's dream.

This song was first published in Children of the Bush in 1902. It is usually attributed to Henry Lawson and appears in most collections of the poet, however when John Meredith collected a version from Charles Ayger in 1957, he claimed to have heard it at school when Lawson would have been about nineteen. The tune is from A.L. Lloyd, who based it on “The Girl I Left Behind.” from A.L.Loyd’s recording sleeve notes in 1960.

Here is a variant by Gary Shearston from his 1965 recording :