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The Old Sunbonnet by Mabel Forrest

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Across to the store I went to-day
To get some things for Missus,
Two grey-winged doves on the bank at play,
Cooed low of love and kisses.

I had such an old bonnet upon my head,
   'Twas scarcely fit for a gin,
And I hurried along by the engine shed,
   For fear that Brian was in.

Brian was born in far Lisburn Town,
   He has sailed the Irish Sea,
And I'm sure the girls of County Down
   Are better looking than me!

But Brian, he stares so long and hard,
   And his eyes are real true and good,
I like to stand in the timber yard,
   When the circular saw cuts wood.

With the smell of sawdust in the air,
   And the great steam engine's song,
When Brian, the Engineer, is there,
   So cheery and gay and strong.

But to-day I felt such an awful fright
   (Men's hearts are nigh to their eyes),
So I didn't look to the left or right,
   But I felt my colour rise.

I heard his step crunch loud on the sand,
   My heart made such a din!
As he touched my arm with his brown hand,
   "What a hurry you're in!

That shabby old bonnet upon your head,
   Acushla, don't try to hide it!
For it's not the bonnet I see," he said,
   "But the rare bright face inside it!"

First published in The Australian Town and Country Journal, 4 October 1905

Author reference sites: AustlitAustralian Dictionary of Biography

See also

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