This version stops short of the one on Mudcat, wherein the farmer tries to kill and salt the narrator too!

NAPPER vocal, mandolin, tenor banjo BLISS mandocello


Come all you romantic young fellows

Thinking to work on a farm

Listen a while to me story

It may serve to keep you from harm

I was a dashing young fellow

Me age it was just seventeen

I hired meself to a farmer

At a Horse Fair in Ballinascreen


His farm was way up the mountains

There amidst heather and bog

The stock I had to look after

A donkey a goat and a dog

The master meself and his mother

We lived in a tumbledown shack

She wasn't a day under ninety

Her bones were beginning to crack


She sat in a chair by the fire

And never would go to her bed

And when I arose every morning

She'd be sitting there nodding her head!

The master turned out an old miser

His heart was as hard as a stone

He worked me from dawn till dark

In a month I was just skin and bone


For we never ate nothing but porridge

Says he that'll make you a man

It very near made me a dead one

We sucked it straight out of the pan

We'd two oul hens and a rooster

One day they all died of the croup

So he plucked em, boiled em salted em

Fed us all week on the soup!


Misfortunes they rarely comes single

For then the old nanny goat died

So he skint it, he boiled it and salted it

And made himself shoes from the hide

He was the most frugal of farmers

But me I was going insane

Fido he died of distemper

And I was sent for the salt once again


When I saw what became of the dog

Not a wink could I sleep all that night

Up with the lark in the morning

I got the most terrible fright!

His poor mother was laid by the fire

When I made for the door he cried "Halt"

"Where are ye going so early?

Come back here and fetch me the salt!"


tntb usually follow this with THE HUMOURS OF WEST MEATH