River Bend [song, 1905]

[Editor: This was published in The Old Bush Songs, edited by Banjo Paterson, 1905; previously published in The Queenslander, 20 October 1894.]

River Bend

(Air: “Belle Mahone”)

At River Bend, in New South Wales,
All alone among the whales,
Busting up some post and rails,
Sweet Belle Mahone.
In the blazing sun we stand,
Cabbage-tree hat, black velvet band,
Moleskins stiff with sweat and sand,
Sweet Belle Mahone.

Chorus: Sweet Belle Mahone, &c.

In the burning sand we pine;
No one asks us to have a wine,
’Tis a jolly crooked line,
Sweet Belle Mahone.
When I am sitting on a log,
Looking like a great big frog,
Waiting for a Murray cod,
Sweet Belie Mahone.

Land of snakes and cockatoos,
Native bears and big emus,
Ugly blacks and kangaroos,
Sweet Belle Mahone,
Paddymelons by the score,
Wild bulls, you should hear them roar!
They all belong to Johnny Dore,
Sweet Belle Mahone.



“River Bend.” — This song certainly cannot boast of antiquity, as it is a parody on a recent sentimental song, but so many correspondents sent it in that it was decided to include it. Perhaps it is to its obvious sincerity of sentiment that it owes its popularity.



Source:
A. B. Paterson (editor). The Old Bush Songs, Angus and Robertson, Sydney, 1905, pages 101-102

Previously published in:
The Queenslander (Brisbane, Qld.), Saturday 20 October 1894, page 740

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