The Fitzroy Blacksmith

A poem by Andrew Barton Paterson

With Apologies to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow ("The Village Blacksmith")

Under the spreading deficit,
The Fitzroy Smithy stands;
The smith, a spendthrift man is he,
With too much on his hands;
But the muscles of his brawny jaw
Are strong as iron bands.

Pay out, pay put, from morn till night,
You can hear the sovereigns go;
Or you'll hear him singing "Old Folks at Home",
In a deep bass voice and slow,
Like a bullfrog down in the village well
When the evening sun is low.

The Australian going "home" for loans
Looks in at the open door;
He loves to see the imported plant,
And to hear the furnace roar,
And to watch the private firms smash up
Like chaff on the threshing-floor.

Toiling, rejoicing, borrowing,
Onward through life he goes;
Each morning sees some scheme begun
That never sees its close.
Something unpaid for, someone done,
Has earned a night's repose.

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