NELL
by
Billy Bennett
(Almost a Gentleman)
Billy Bennett
Nell was a collier's daughter, 
Innocent, sweet seventeen
Shall I tell you the story of Nellie? 
Yes, tell us it, Bill, if it's clean.

Nell was a collier's daughter, 
With a coal-black daddy so fine,
At the close of the day to the theatre he'd stray 
To forget the dark toil of the mine.

Once he sat in the gallery with some of the lads,
They started to quarrel a bit.
It wasn't his shift, but they gave him a lift, 
And the collier went down in the pit.

Years have rolled on since that happened, 
Time soothed the widow's pain.
One morning she met a diver 
And the girl's mother married again.

Nell was a diver's daughter- 
He used to dive under the ships.
He'd walk on the bed of the ocean 
And tread on the fishes and chips.

But the mother and he could never agree, 
And they quarrelled for hours and hours.
Once he called her a dog, so she picked up his clog,
And then came a coach filled with flowers.

Years have rolled on since that happened, 
Time soothed the widow's pain.
One morning she met a plumber 
And the girl's mother married again.

Nell was a plumber's daughter, 
Aye, Nell was a plumber's lass.
She ran like mad to fetch her dad 
When she smelt an escape of gas.

Dad went upstairs with a lighted match 
Singing 'Grannie's Song at Twilight."
We heard a crack, and Dad came back 
Through the next-door neighbour's sky-light!

Years have rolled on since that happened, 
Time soothed the widow's pain,
One morning she met an engineer 
And the girl's mother married again.

Nell was an engineer's daughter 
She once took his mid-day meal,
He was oiling a shaft, and she stood and laughed 
When his boko got caught in a wheel.

He was picked from the ground, whirled round and round.
And poor Nell started shrieking.
He came down with a smack on the flat of his back 
And his oil-can started leaking!

Years have rolled on-no, I've said that once...!

Then Nell fell in love with a sailor 
And married a jolly Jack Tar.
He had eyes of blue, he was sixty-two, 
But you know what sailors are!

He'd a son called John who was twenty-one, 
And it's very strange to say
He fell in love with Nell's mother 
And married her right away.

Now Nell is her mother's new mother, 
Her father becomes her own son,
Her mother's first child is her father-in-law, 
And her daughter's the son-of-a-gun.

Her mother's first cousin looks after Nell's child, 
For they found on the day of its birth
That its uncle's step-sister's its grandmother's aunt 
And I'm the biggest liar on earth! 
The end