Mudcat Café message #63027 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #9631   Message #63027
Posted By: Martin Graebe
14-Mar-99 - 06:41 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Maid of Australia / Maids of Australia
Subject: ADD: Maid of Australia
This version was collected by Sabine Baring-Gould from George Doidge of Chillaton in West Devon on 28th September 1896. The missing line in verse three in other versions has the young woman floating on her back.

This has been transcribed from the unpublished Baring-Gould manuscripts
(see www.btinternet.com/~greenjack/sbghome.html)

MAID OF AUSTRALIA


As I walked out upon Oxberry Banks
Where the fair pretty maidens were playing their pranks
Then beneath the green bushes I sat myself down
To view the sweet damsels that flourished around
    In the forests of happy Australia
    In the forests of happy Australia
    Where the maidens are handsome and gay

Then a beautiful damsel to me did appear
To the banks of the river the light did draw near
Then slipped off her clothes, before me did stand
As fair as did Venus just come from the wood
    In the forests of happy Australia
    In the forests of happy Australia
    Where the maidens are handsome and gay

She plunged in the river without fear or dread
With her hands all extended in swimming outspread
Her long lovely hair hung in ringlets so slack
(line omitted)
    In the forests of happy Australia
    In the forests of happy Australia
    Where the maidens are handsome and gay

Like lightning I hasted and came to the strand
When her feet chanced to slip and she slid on the sand
With my arm round her waist I so closely did twine
Till the Sun in the west had begun to decline
    In the forests of happy Australia
    In the forests of happy Australia
    Where the maidens are handsome and gay

(two lines omitted)
Then I left the fair maid in Australia behind
To pace forth her sighs and to mourn in the wind
    In the forests of happy Australia
    In the forests of happy Australia
    Where the maidens are handsome and gay


Martin