voices from the past


The Magic Pudding

Written and Illustrated by Norman Lindsay (1879 - 1969)

. . . the story continues . . .

Spanish Gold

'When I was young I used to hold
I'd run away to sea,
And be a Pirate brave and bold
On the coast of Caribbee.

'For I sez to meself, "I'll fill me hold
With Spanish silver and Spanish gold,
And out of every ship I sink
I'll collar the best of food and drink.

'"For Caribbee, or Barbaree,
Or the shores of South Amerikee
Are all the same to a Pirate bold,
Whose thoughts are fixed on Spanish gold."

'For Pirates go, but their next of kin
Are Merchant Captains, hard as sin,
And Merchant Mates as hard as nails
Aboard of every ship that sails.

'And I worked aloft and I worked below,
I worked wherever I had to go,
And the winds blew hard and the winds blew
And I sez to meself as the ship she rolled,

'So one fine day I runs away
A Pirate for to be;
But I found there was never a Pirate left
On the coast of Caribbee.

'"O Caribbee! O Barbaree!
O shores of South Amerikee!
O, never go there: if the truth be told,
You'll get more kicks than Spanish gold."'

'And that's the truth, mate,' said Bill to Bunyip Bluegum. 'There ain't no pirates nowadays at sea, except western ocean First Mates, and many's the bootin' I've had for not takin' in the slack of the topsail halyards fast enough to suit their fancy. It's a hard life, the sea, and Sam here'll bear me out when I say that bein' hit on the head with a belayin' pin while tryin' to pick up the weather earing is an experience that no man wants twice. But toon up, and a song all round.'

'I shall sing you the "Penguin Bold",' said Sam, and, striking a graceful attitude, he sang this song —

'To see the penguin out at sea,
And watch how he behaves,
Would prove that penguins cannot be
And never shall be slaves.
You haven't got a notion
How penguins brave the ocean
And laugh with scorn at waves.

'To see the penguin at his ease
Performing fearful larks
With stingarees of all degrees,
As well as whales and sharks;
The sight would quickly let you know
The great contempt that penguins show
For stingarees and sharks.

'O see the penguin as he goes
A-turning Catherine wheels,
Without repose upon the nose
Of walruses and seals.
But bless your heart, a penguin feels
Supreme contempt for foolish seals,
While he never fails, where'er he goes,
To turn back-flaps on a walrus nose.'

'It's all very fine,' said the Puddin' gloomily, 'singing about the joys of being penguins and pirates, but how'd you like to be a Puddin' and be eaten all day long?'

And in a very gruff voice he sang as follows: —

'O, who would be a puddin',
A puddin' in a pot,
A puddin' which is stood on
A fire which is hot?
O sad indeed the lot
Of puddin's in a pot.

'I wouldn't be a puddin'
If I could be a bird,
If I could be a wooden
Doll, I would'n say a word.
Yes, I have often heard
It's grand to be a bird.

'But as I am a puddin',
A puddin' in a pot,
I hope you get the stomach ache
For eatin' me a lot.
I hope you get it hot,
You puddin'-eatin' lot!'

'Very well sung, Albert,' said Bill encouragingly, 'though you're a trifle husky in your undertones, which is no doubt due to the gravy in your innards. However, as a reward for bein' a bright little feller we shall have a slice of you all round before turnin' in for the night.'

So they whistled up the plum-duff side of the Puddin', and had supper. When that was done, Bill stood up and made a speech to Bunyip Bluegum.

'I am now about to put before you an important proposal,' said Bill. 'Here you are, a young intelligent feller, goin' about seein' the world by yourself. Here is Sam an' me, two as fine fellers as ever walked, goin' about the world with a Puddin'. My proposal to you is — Join us, and become a member of the Noble Society of Puddin'-owners. The duties of the Society,' went on Bill, 'are light. The members are required to wander along the roads, indulgin' in conversation, song and story, eatin' at regular intervals at the Puddin'. And now, what's your answer?'

'My answer,' said Bunyip Bluegum, 'is, Done with you.' And, shaking hands warmly all round, they loudly sang —


'The solemn word is plighted,
The solemn tale is told,
We swear to stand united,
Three puddin'-owners bold.

'When we with rage assemble,
Let puddin'-snatchers groan;
Let puddin'-burglars tremble,
They'll ne'er our puddin' own.

'Hurrah for puddin'-owning,
Hurrah for Friendship's hand,
The puddin'-thieves are groaning
To see our noble band.

'Hurrah, we'll stick together,
And always bear in mind
To eat our puddin' gallantly,
Whenever we're inclined.'

Having given three rousing cheers, they shook hands once more and turned in for the night. After such a busy day, walking, talking, fighting, singing, and eating puddin', they were all asleep in a pig's whisper.

1st Slice pages:   one   two   three   four   five
previous page Book Index Next Chapter 2, page one

Back to Australian Writers

We're SafeSurf Rated

Know Australia     Voice of Australians     Uniquely Australian     Tall Poppy     Australian Cards     Flashback     Games     Home

Contact Us     ALLdownunder.com.au    Website designed & managed by Lady Luck Enterprises