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TSE  May 2005

TSE May 2005

Subject:

Re: To Jean Verdenal

From:

Francis Gavin <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

T. S. Eliot Discussion forum.

Date:

Sun, 1 May 2005 22:24:49 -0800

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (87 lines)

Eventually set to music and recorded by June Tabor back in the 70s.


on 5/1/05 6:52 PM, Carrol Cox at [log in to unmask] wrote:

> An Australian from Scotland, Eric Bogle, commemorates the slaughter and
> its aftermath.
> 
> "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda"
> 
> When I was a young man I carried my pack
> And I lived the free life of a rover
> From the Murrays green basin to the dusty outback
> I waltzed my Matilda all over
> Then in nineteen fifteen my country said son
> It's time to stop rambling cos there's work to be done
> So they gave me a tin hat and they gave me a gun
> And they sent me away to the war
> 
> And the band played Waltzing Matilda
> As we sailed away from the quay
> And amidst all the tears and the shouts and the cheers
> We sailed off to Galipoli
> 
> How well I remember that terrible day
> How the blood stained the sand and the water
> And how in that town that they called Sulva bay
> We were butchered like lambs at the slaughter
> Johnny Turk he was ready he primed himself well
> He chased us with bullets he rained us with shells
> And in five minutes flat he'd blown us all to hell
> Nearly blew us right back to Australia
> 
> But the band played Waltzing Matilda
> As we stopped to bury our slain
> We buried our and the Turks buried theirs
> Then we started all over again
> 
> Now those who were left well we tried to survive
> In a mad world of blood death and fire
> And for ten weary weeks I kept myself alive
> But around me the corpses piled higher
> Then a big Turkish shell knocked me arse over tit
> And I woke up in my hospital bed
> I saw what it had done and I wished I was dead
> Never knew there were worse things than dying
> 
> For I'll go no more Waltzing Matilda
> All around the green bush far and near
> For to hump tent and pegs a man needs both legs
> No more Waltzing Matilda for me
> 
> So they collected the cripples the wounded the maimed
> And they shipped us back home to Australia
> The armless the legless the blind the insane
> Those proud wounded heroes of Suvla
> And as our ship pulled into Circular Quay
> I looked at the place my legs used to be
> And thank Christ there was no one there waiting for me
> To grieve and to mourn and to pity
> 
> And the band played Waltzing Matilda
> As they carried us down the gangway
> But nobody cheered they just stood and stared
> Then turned all their faces away
> 
> And now every April I sit on my porch
> And I watch the parade pass before me
> And I watch my old comrades how proudly they march
> Renewing old dreams of past glory
> And the old men march slowly all bent stiff and sore
> The forgotten heroes from a forgotten war
> And the young people ask "What are they marching for?"
> And I ask myself the same question
> 
> And the band played Waltzing Matilda
> And the old men answer to the call
> But year after year their numbers get fewer
> Some day no one will march there at all
> 
> Waltzing Matilda
> Waltzing Matilda
> Who'll come a waltzing Matilda with me
> And their ghosts may be heard as you pass the Billabong
> Who'll come a waltzing Matilda with me
> 
> (Eric Bogle

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