The Salt When I was a strapping young fellow Aged about seventeen I hired meself to a farmer At the Horse Fair in Ballinascreen His farm was way up the mountain There was nothing but heather and bog And me job - sure I had to look after His chickens, his goat and his dog Now me, the farmer and his mother We all lived in a tumbledown shack His mother was well over ninety With the bones sticking out of her back! His poor mother she slept by the fire For the rain it came down on her bed And when I'd get up every morning She'd be sitting there nodding her head! The master was an awful oul skinflint His heart was as hard as a stone He worked me from daylight till darkness In a month I was just skin and bone. He fed me on nothing but "piners" He said they would make me a man Well they damn nearly made me a dead one Eaten half raw off the pan Now he had three oul hens and a rooster One day they all died in the coop So he plucked them, he boiled them and salted them And we lived for three weeks on the soup! Bad luck now it never comes single For the next day the nanny goat died So he skint it, he boiled it and salted it And made a bodhran from the hide! It was then poor old Neddy the donkey He broke his hind leg and suffered great pain So he shot him, he skint him and boiled him And called for the salt once again I thought, now, his mind was affected And meself, I was going insane For when poor Fido died of distemper He called for the salt once again! When I thought of what happened poor old Fido I couldn't sleep thinking that night And when I got up in the morning I got a most horrible fright! His poor mother was dead by the fire When I ran for the door he cried "Halt" "Where are ye going so early? Come back here and help me to salt!" Well I went through the door like a rocket Sez I - I'll get out of this vault I tripped in the yard with excitement And out he came running with salt. I took to me heels like a cowboy I went over the hills like a hare I never stopped running for a fortnight And I never went back to a fair! MR apr97
Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!