Better'n Smithin'

​Roaming the countryside
Swag on the shoulder
Billy in the hand
Life was relaxing
A man and his dog
Strolling through life

Joe Harper relaxed against a tree
He'd been there all day
Bert King about an hour
Damper and tea the fare
Harper the story teller
That bugger could go all day

Stoking the fire, Joe started
Was married once ya know
Back in '27 Jean's 'er name
'ad a couple boys and a girl
All grown up now
Might even 'ave their own

In '30 I lost me job
The cockies wouldn't pay
So Joe Bolden sacked us
Me and, what's that bugger's name
The bloke the Japs gassed
That's right bloody Mick O'Shea

Were hard for us all
Me with two kids
Another on the way
Mick had five I think
The trouble with catholics
They just keep bloody coming

Were on the dole for a year
Just enough to feed us
Took me dog rabbiting
Rabbit stew most nights
Couldn't afford much else
But underground mutton and spuds

Bolden took me back
Smithin' were hard work
Hadn't done anything for a year
Bloody summer nearly killed me
110 in the water bag
And me pumpin' the bellows

That was 25 year ago
Been humpin' me bluey
For 10 bloody years
Gone all over the place
In Queensland once
Too bloody hot up there

Chased by wild roos
Shot at by cockies
Cut wood for me tucker
Pinched a chook here and there
Not always easy
But better than Smithin'