Paul Gerard Smith
Performed by Pat O'Malley
(The Lancashire Lad)
Illustration by George Price
It seems things were reaching a crisis,
A cabinet meeting was called.
Prime Minister rapped with 'is gavel,
"You will please come to order," 'e bawled.
"It is nice to be calm-like and placid,
And pretend the 'ole thing is a bore,
And, though it's a bit of a bother,
We must keep our minds on the war.
'We must get rid of every distraction,
We must banish all things that disturb,
And to start the ball rolling I'd like to suggest
That we get rid of Pinwinkle's 'Erb.
"As you know, young 'Erbert Pinwinkle
And national crises don't rhyme.
It's either the war or young 'Erbert!
We must face them one at a time!
"Now that, gentlemen, is the question.
That's what we're gathered 'ere for:
We've got to get rid of old Pinwinkle's son,
Or else we must call off the war."
The following day to Pinwinkle's
A cabinet minister came.
"The country is in a dilemma," he said,
"The dilemma is 'Erbert, by name.
"Every Englishman must do his duty,
We stand with our backs to the wall,
We must win the war, but with Herbert about
We simply can't do it... that's all.
"We've arranged for the lad's deportation,
It was 'ard finding some place to go.
We tried Norway and Sweden and Denmark,
But all of those countries said 'No.'
"We've 'ad to be most diplomatic,
It took much persuasion and tact,
For shipping of 'Erbert to some foreign land
'As the mark of an unfriendly act.
"But we finally did get permission,
To send 'im to 'is Uncle Sam.
'Ere's your ticket... pack up your belongings,
Take your missus and 'Erbert... and scram."
Of course old Pinwinkle was startled,
'E said, "It seems drastic to make
Two innocent parents do penance
For a bio-logical mistake."
But 'e soon seen 'is duty an' done it,
Friendly like 'e took 'Erb by the lug
And said, Stop throwing stones at yer mother!
We're going on a journey, you thug."
So mother put on 'er new bonnet,
And father 'is best Sunday coat,
Then they tied 'Erbert down while they washed 'im,
And then they went down to the boat.
Pa said when 'e looked at the vessel.
"Bah gum, she's a leaky old tub."
But the cabinet minister nodded 'is 'ead
And answered'im, "Aye, there's the rub.
'Y'know accidents 'appen in wartime,
Those U-boats are so 'ard to curb,
And if by a chance you should run across one
We 'aven't lost nothing... just 'Erb."
Two days out of Landsend it 'appened:
A periscope 'ove into view,
And up came a boat with no name on its bow,
Just three numbers preceded by U.
They took everyone off on a lifeboat
And put them aboard of the sub,
And then got things ready, torpedo and all
To take a pot shot at the tub.
But as they stood by for the signal
The voice of a sailor cried, "Wait!...
We've got to do something about this 'ere lad
E's just bit an ear oft the mate."
The captain on hearing this, shouted,
"Vas Machst Du, mein billige Frau?"
Which is merely a foreign expression
Calculated to quiet a row.
The sailor just stood and saluted
"Come, come, lad," the chief loudly roared,
"It's this kid," said the sailor, " 'e's ruined the mate,
And 'e's chased all the crew overboard."
"Warum?" cried the captain, "It's no time to play,
Get the torpedo ready... act smart!"
Said the sailor, "We can't get it ready because
'E's took the torpedo apart.
"And now 'e's below with a hammer and wrench,
Puttin' all the machines on the blink,
'E's opened the bungholes and turned on the valves
If we aren't very careful, we'll sink."
"That's torn it," the submarine captain exclaimed,
"This 'ere is a pretty to-do;
'0o's this lad?" 'e inquired, and the sailor replied,
"It's 'Erbert Pinwinkle... that's 'oo."
"Curse the luck," said the skipper, in guttural tones,
"It looks like we're properly tricked.
Of all of the boats on the ocean today,
'E'd be on the one that I picked.
"Put 'im back on the boat, we'll fix up 'er leaks
And see that 'er boilers is trim
If 'e promises 'e'll sail, right on to New York
That's all we'll be askin' of 'im.
"I don't mind their aeroplanes, bullets and bombs
And gas attacks,,, Heaven forbid!
But for one I surrender, and no questions asked,
If I 'ave to face Pinwinkle's kid."