Tom Bird's Dog (Kenneth Peacock)

It was on a Monday morning
as far as we all know
When you and Freeman Pink decided
a-gunning for to go,
You left your home that morning
with no worry on your mind,
With your #12 tucked under your arm
you weren't losing any time.

They say that you were slightly rigged
with your barbel hanging slack,
They say you were making good headway
but the dog he drove you back,
I have seen a-lots of frightened men
but I think you take the bun,
When Mister Bird next morning would
have found Fido dead in his gore.

And when poor Evelyn heard of this
she could hardly speak a word.
She said, "Don't leave me Tom,
my dear, I'll do without my bird."
But you being kind of stubborn
didn't want to stir no stink,
If you had favoured Evelyn
you would have 'ffronted Freeman Pink.

So when you started out again
you took a different route,
And when you got down 'board of your boat
your tongue was hanging out,
I don't know how many birds you got,
your neighbours never said,
I wish the devil had the turs
and Tom Bird's dog was dead.

####.... Author unknown. Traditional Newfoundland ditty ....####
Collected in 1959 by Kenneth Peacock from Kenneth Pink [1938-?] of Rose Blanche, NL, and published in Songs Of The Newfoundland Outports, Vol 1, pp.101-102, by The National Museum Of Canada (1965) Crown Copyrights Reserved.

Kenneth Peacock noted that this native ditty comes from the south coast of Newfoundland.

From the Dictionary Of Newfoundland English:
Barbel or Barvel - leather, canvas or oil-skin apron, reaching from breast to knees, worn when catching fish or especially when processing the catch ashore; hence, home-made domestic apron.
Tur or Turr - one of several sea-birds hunted as food; Atlantic common murre; baccalieu bird (Uria aalge aalge).


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