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(1862 - 1909 / Australia)

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Australia's Pride

Now Pat Ahearne, of Ingleburn
Upon the Castlereagh,
Was flush of cash and very "flash"
As shearer-persons say.
At Yankee grab his luck was cool,
At loo he'd lately scooped the pool;
He'd simply smashed the two-up school -
[Assisted by a "grey!"]

And Pat grew then like other men,
His head began to swell;
As he was fly he thought he'd try
The Sydney folks as well.
"Their chances would be mighty slim
Of working any points on him,
When Euchre Bill and Ginger Jim
Had found he was a sell!"

But bushmen's games are not the games
That Sydney spielers play;
A country smarty's "just their dart,"
The city sharpers say.
And Patrick he was taken down
For all he had, but half-a-crown,
Before he'd been in Sydney town
For more than half a day!

'Twas well for Pat, the shearer, that
He'd had the sense to pay
His fare's return to Ingleburn
Before he went away.
It's not what you could call a joke
To find yourself completely "broke";
But Patrick had a splendid stroke
In store for Castlereagh!

He found a shop - an oyster-shop -
Where lobster, crab and cray
Were all alive, and seemed to thrive;
And purchased straight-away
Some crayfish and some lobsters, too
(Such things are cheap in Woolloomooloo),
And caught the Western mail that flew
Towards the Castlereagh.

The train was crowded; which allowed
No sleeping on the trip.
Pat had a flask, and thought to ask
The men to take a nip.
Just then a lobster chanced to find
The bag unclosed, and, feeling kind,
It gave a man a nip; but mind,
It was not on the trip!

And then some crayfish got away,
With lobsters, two or three;
And sundry grips and divers nips
Made things extremely free.
Profane expressions filled the air
(Disgraceful how some people swear!);
A livelier time than Pat had there
You would not wish to see!

A great hooray! the ladies, they
Declared it was a plot,
Beyond a doubt, to drive them out.
But leave? No, they would not;
They swore that they would clear the coast,
Or else the guard should lose his post;
But women always are a most
Unreasonable lot!

On Pat's return to Ingleburn
The shell-fish were in tow,
And things were gay on Castlereagh
Preparing for the Show.
For every township in the scrub
That owns two churches and a pub
Must run a Show and draw a sub.
From Goldsbrough, Mort and Co.!

Now shell-fish are extremely rare
Upon the Castlereagh,
And Ingleburn galoots don't yearn
For lobster or for cray.
Lobsters indeed they'd never seen,
And never might, had it not been
For Pat Ahearne, and he was mean
Enough to make them pay!

On lucre bent he hired a tent
And made a rise with ease.
'Twas at the Show, of course, you know
Where side-shows always please.
The shell-fish they were placed inside,
And Pat stood by the door and cried:
"Walk in and see Australia's Pride -
The monster Sydney fleas!"

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004


Read poems about / on: fish, pride, school, women, city, people, fishing, shopping, sleep, woman, lost, work, rose, running

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