The Old Farmer and His Shrew

 
Performed by:
Mick Haywood
Recorded in:
Whitby
Recorded on:
29/12/2006
Recorded by:
Ray Padgett
Genre:
Agriculture
Keywords:
Farm animals,
Farm implements,
Dialect,
Wife
 

Archival information

TYG:
13
Key:
D
Time Signature:
3/4
Roud id:
21118
Laws id:
Master title:
The Old Farmer and His Shrew
Places Cited:

Lyrics

Chorus
Mary, oh, Mary, please come 'ome to me,
Expects to go crazy wi' list'nin' to thee;
If tha gets murdered then Ah s'all get 'ung,
An' s'all 'ave to purrup with thi natterin' tongue.

1
Been wearin' this vest an' these owd woollen pants
Since tha went away t' other week.
Could do wi' a bath, but can't get watter wahm,
Ah'm grubby an stinks like a seak;*
Then there's t' owd dog, well 'e ought to be weshed,
An' then there's this frahsy* owd cat;
All goin' lahsy, no doubt abaht that,
We've all on us started to scrat.

2
Ah never knew 'ow tha managed at all
To deal wi' this awk'ard owd cow;
Soon as she sees me she tosses 'er 'eead
An' starts to kick up a row;
Then she stands still, aye an' lets me gerron,
Ah gets a good milkin' can full,
Then she kicks aht, there's milk all ovver t' flooer,
An' then she bellers fer t' bull.

3
Ah went rahnd to t' 'en-'oil to see what were up,
To clean 'em an' streighten up pens;
Well t' door were all stuck, aye an' t' flooer plastered up,
There really were no room for t' 'ens.
They've gone into t' parlour, taken two cocks an' all,
But Ah can't blame 'em fer that.
Ah know tha won't like it 'em layin' their eggs,
There in thi best Sunday 'at.

4
Ah thowt it were time Ah got ploughin' ageean,
In th' rough against bottom lea;
Though t' blade were rusty it started alreight,
But Ah can't do it like thee.
First 'andle flew up, Ah've a lovely black eye,
Then t' owd plough went an' got stuck;
T' owd 'oss won't budge 'cos 'er's castin' a shoe,
An' both on us plastered in t' muck.

5
Ah never could understand choose 'ow much Ah tried
Exactly just 'ow it were done,
Dippin' them sheep into that stinkin' beck
An' slappin' their starns till the' run.
Ah made a mess on it 'ere where Ah tried,
On yon greasy bank where Ah slipped,
Fell into t' sheep-'oil an' nearly got drahned,
An' so it were me as got dipped.

 

*seak = greasy sludge from old woollen mills
*frahsy = untidy, musty
oil = hole, or wider application, a place or room as in coil-oil (coal-hole)

Archival information

TYG:
13
Key:
D
Time Signature:
3/4
Roud id:
21118
Laws id:
Master title:
The Old Farmer and His Shrew
Places Cited: