Butchered to Make a Dutchman's Holiday by Harry "Breaker" Morant

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In prison cell I sadly sit,
   A d__d crest-fallen chappie!
And own to you I feel a bit --
   A little bit -- unhappy!

It really ain't the place nor time
   To reel off rhyming diction -
But yet we'll write a final rhyme
   Whilst waiting cru-ci-fixion!

No matter what "end" they decide --
   Quick-lime or "b'iling ile," sir?
We'll do our best when crucified
   To finish off in style, sir!

But we bequeath a parting tip
   For sound advice of such men,
Who come across in transport ship
   To polish off the Dutchmen!

If you encounter any Boers
   You really must not loot 'em!
And if you wish to leave these shores,
   For pity's sake, DON'T SHOOT 'EM!!

And if you'd earn a D.S.O.,
   Why every British sinner
Should know the proper way to go

Let's toss a bumper down our throat, -
   Before we pass to Heaven,
And toast: "The trim-set petticoat
   We leave behind in Devon."

First published in The Bulletin, 19 April 1902, and again in the same magazine on 9 June 1973;
and later in
Bushman and Buccaneer: Harry Morant : His 'Ventures and Verses edited by Frank Renar, 1902;
Breaker Morant: A Play in Two Acts by Kenneth Ross, 1979;
The Poetry of 'Breaker' Morant: from "The Bulletin" 1891-1903 with original illustrations by Breaker Morant, 1980;
Clubbing of the Gunfire: 101 Australian War Poems edited by Chris Wallace-Crabb and peter Pierce, 1984;
Fighting Words: Australian War Writing edited by Carl Harrison-Ford, 1986;
The Penguin Book of Australian Satirical Verse edited by Philip Neilsen, 1986;
The Sting in the Wattle: Australian Satirical Verse edited by Philip Neilsen, 1993;
Sunlines: An Anthology of Poetry to Celebrate Australia's Harmony in Diversity edited by Anne Fairbarin, 2002; and
Our Country: Classic Australian Poetry: From the Colonial Ballads to Paterson & Lawson edited by Michael Cook, 2004.

Note: At its end the manuscript is described - The Last Rhyme and Testament of Tony Lumpkin

Author reference sites: Austlit, Australian Dictionary of Biography

See also.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on April 19, 2011 9:00 AM.

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