It’s Only A Way He’s Got

A poem by Andrew Barton Paterson

(As sung by the camp fire.)


No doubt the saying’s all abroad,
And rattling through the land.
We hear it at the mangle, too,
With “What are you going to stand?”
I’m sure I don’t know which to choose,
There’s really such a lot—
But I hope my song you’ll not refuse,
For it’s only a way I’ve got.

Chorus: Tol, lol, litter, tol, lol.
Tol, lol, the rol, lay.

In Sydney town a gal I met,
Her dress was rather gay,
I think the place, it was Pitt Street,
Or somewhere near that way.
Says she, “The night is very cold,
Pray, stand a drop of Hot.
I hope my freedom you’ll excuse,
For it’s only a way I’ve got.”

Chorus: Tol, lol, &c.

The drink we soon put out of sight,
And off for home did walk,
When a fellow came up and quite polite
To her began to talk.
He drew my ticker from my fob,
And bolted like a shot.
Says she, “Oh, take no notice, Bob,
It’s only a way he’s got.”

Chorus: Tol, lol, &c.

Says I, “I’ll soon catch you, my chap,”
And arter him I flies,
When another stepped up and knocked my hat
Completely o’er my eyes.
He from my pocket drew my purse,
And off with it did trot;
Says she, “It’s well it is no worse,
But it’s only a way he’s got.”

Chorus: Tol, lol, &c.

A little further on we went.
I had got rather shy.
Then a butcher ran his tray
Right bang into my eye.
The fellow said it was my fault,
Called me a drunken sot.
Then, like a thief, he slunk away,
’Twas only a way he’d got!

Chorus: Tol, lol, &c.

Now, as we walked along the street,
A lot of chaps we met.
I saw they on a game were bent;
Says they, “How fat you get!”
I got from them some ugly pokes,
They made me a regular Scot.
They said, “Oh, never mind our jokes,
It’s only a way we’ve got!”

Chorus: Tol, lol, &c.

I have grown tired of Sydney town
Since I’ve lost all my cash,
And so will up the country go,
And tell them of my smash.
Oh, then we’ll have such lots of fun,
I’ll court Miss Polly Scott;
And if she asks me what I mean
I’ll tell her it’s a way I’ve got.

Chorus: Tol, lol, &c.

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