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Shimbo Darktree Lyr Req: trad songs about stealing (14) Lyr Add: VAN DIEMEN'S LAND 22 Feb 04


Try this one, about poaching, and a free trip to my birthplace, Tasmania:

VAN DIEMEN'S LAND

You rambling boys of Liverpool, I'll have you to beware
When you go a-hunting with your dog, your gun, your snare.
Watch out for the gamekeeper, keep your dog at your command,
And think about the hardships sailing to Van Diemen's Land.

We had two Irish lads on board, Jimmy Murphy and Paddy Malone,
And they were both the truest mates that any man could own.
The gamekeeper he caught them and from old England's strand,
They were fourteen years transported unto Van Diemen's Land.

The first day that we landed upon that fatal shore,
The settlers they inspected us, full twenty score or more.
They led us round like horses, and sold us out of hand,
And yoked us to the plough, brave boys, to plough Van Diemen's Land.

The hovels that we live in are built of mud and clay,
With rotten straw for bedding, and to that we daren't say nay.
They fence us in with raging fire, and we slumber as we can,
But it keeps away the tigers upon Van Diemen's Land.

There was a girl from Newport; Susan Somers was her name,
And she had been transported for the playing of the game.
She took the captain's fancy and he married her out of hand,
And she gives us all good treatment upon Van Diemen's Land.

One night as I lay sleeping all in the hold below,
I dreamed I was in Liverpool, way back in Marylebone,
With my true love beside me and a glass of ale in hand,
When I woke up broken-hearted lying off Van Diemen's Land.

So all you lively poaching lads, this warning take from me.
I'd have you quit night-walking and avoid bad company,
And throw aside your guns and snares, for let me tell you plain,
If you knew of our misfortunes, you would never poach again.


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