Monday, September 03, 2012

Butcherin’ in the Bush.

Me dad, ‘e was a butcher in the bush before the war
jist after the depression, before market’n was the score,
before red meat was packaged in a film of clear clingwrap,
before a bloke jist ‘ad to cook in a microwave - poor chap !

I remembers at the sale yards almost each and every week
where I jist ‘ad to look and learn, ‘ardly allowed to speak,
where dad would do the bidd’n while mum served at the shop
and ‘iffen I was lucky, might get a lollipop.

When the sale was over, that’s when the work begun
because after killin’ cattle each one ‘ad ter be ‘ung
then skinned and sliced, sawed and ‘acked
to shoulders, legs and sides,
then put in to the coolroom after stretchin’ out the ‘ides.

Flies were mostly friendly, they’d ‘ang around all day,
we did’n ‘ave the aerosol to send ‘em on their way,
we’d put up sticky, curly strips ‘angin’ everywhere,
poor ol’ mum would be relieved, not surrender to despair
for steaks and chops and sausages ‘angin’ from steel ‘ooks
or plucked and dressed white leghorns, known to all as ‘chooks’.

Course, as I got older I usta ‘elp me dad
servin’ in the butcher shop, becomin’ a - ‘bit of a lad’
weighin’ up the prime mince, jokin’ the local bum,
lookin’ after Mrs Jones but never weighin’ me thumb.

That’s on account,
they all would say,
I’ll hafta pay another day
what could a poor ol’ butcher do
to keep ‘is wolves at bay.

(c). Rimeriter. 11/2/03.
      Revised 25/7/12.

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