Do you think I'm asking much of you, my mother,
I have been without a collar for a week;
That I have only one, 'tis true, my mother,
For which you must admit I vainly seek.
I know 'twas looking very black, my mother,
Black and shiny, mother, as your golosh,
But I long to have that collar back, my mother,
Oh! When may I expect it?
Oh! When may I expect it?
Expect it from the wash, mother dear.
From the wash, my mother,
Wash my mother, wash my mother,
Expect it from the wash, my mother dear.

I went to school this morning early, mother,
The Board Inspector came to see us, dear;
He's plain and tall and rather burly, mother,
I knew my lessons well, and had no fear.
But soon he found I had no collar, mother,
And suggested that my face required a rub;
He boxed my ears, and made me holloa, mother,
And said I looked 'an awful little scrub!'
He said I looked a scrub,
He said I looked a scrub,
An awful little scrub, mother dear,
Like a scrub, my mother
Scrub my mother, scrub my mother,
Like an awful little scrub, my mother dear.

I cannot stand it any more, my mother,
My little heart is well nigh rent in twain;
I must confess my grief is sore, my mother,
I'm young, too young to bear such abject pain!
My observation is not slow, my mother,
The sneers of vulgar boys will surely cease,
When my garments do not plainly show, my mother,
Such patches and such holes and spots of grease.
Such patches and such holes,
Such patches and such holes,
Such holes and spots of grease, mother dear,
Spots of grease, my mother,
Crease my mother, grease my mother!
Such holes and spots of grease, my mother dear.

I think I'll take a situation, mother,
My uncle has a fishing smack, you know,
He offers me some occupation, mother,
On board—if you will only let me go.
I shall rid me of unruly imps, my mother,
In fifteen years perhaps I may come back,
I'll learn the lobsters and the shrimps, my mother,
To boil on board my uncle's fishing smack.
To boil on board my uncle's,
On board to boil my uncle's,
My uncle's fishing smack, mother dear,
Fishing smack my mother,
Smack my mother, boil my uncle's,
Boil my uncle's fishing smack, my mother dear!

Written and performed by George Grossmith (1847-1912) - 1881
Performed by Lionel Brough (1837-1909)
From Music Hall Lyrics Collection
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