JUST BEHIND THE BATTLE, MOTHER
(parody)
 
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Just behind the battle mother, I am slinking off to you
For the cannon's rattle Mother, makes me feel uncommon blue
I am not so fond of dying as my comrades seem to be
So from the missiles round me flying I will mizzle back to you.

Chorus: Dearest Mother, here the hissing
Of the bullets is too plain
So I'll be numbered with the missing
But oh, not ever with the slain.

Would I were a sparrow, Mother or an owl or bumble-bee
Or some confounded thing or other so that I could fly to thee
Or I'd be a periwinkle, or a minnow in a brook
If I could but learn a wrinkle in the way to take my hook.

Chorus:

Gently falls the night, dear Mother, gently slopes the battle plain
While I glide from sight, dear Mother, gently sloping home again
I care not for wars and quarrels or for laurels on my brow
I'd prefer to see the laurels in your kitchen garden now.

Chorus:

From the fort comes sounds of thunder, there's no com-fort in the thought
Will they see me out I wonder, if they do I may be caught
Once I fell and swoon-ded, Mother, and I hollared fit to crack
I thought I was wounded, dear Mother, in the holler of my back.

Chorus:

I regret that I resisted in obedience to bow
I was silly when I 'listed, but I'm much more flighty now
When I'm back again, dear Mother, from thy side I'll never roam
But stay and whack my younger brother in tranquility at home.

Chorus:

 
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Written and composeded by Harry Hunter & T. Vincent Davies - 1877
Performed by George Beauchamp (1863-1901)
Performed by Harry Hunter (1841-1906) who, in 1886 joined Francis Bros. & Day
to form Francis, Day & Hunter music publishers.
From monologues.co.uk Music Hall Lyrics Collection
 
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