― 61 ―

O'Mulligan's Wallaby Drive

Mr. Peter O'Mulligan often had thought
That he hadn't been nearly so good as he ought,
In dispensing good cheer to his neighbours and friends,
So he hit on a scheme that would make them amends.
He said, “Molly, me darlin', we'll go the whole hog,
You must lay in a stock of provisions and grog.
We'll invite all the neighbours, and try to contrive
Just to give them an iligant wallaby drive.

He invited the Murphy's, both Johnny and Mat,
And old Sandy McDougall from Tumble Down Flat;
There was Barney O'Grady, and Jones from the Mill,
And old Paddy the stockman, from Cabbage Tree Hill.

  ― 62 ―
And they came with their wives, and their sweethearts, and some
Came alone, and a few were unable to come.
But it did Molly's heart good to see them arrive
To Peter O'Mulligan's wallaby drive.

There was game in abundance, and plenty of sport,
And the old gum trees shook with the rattling report
Of old Paddy's big musket, as furious and fast,
He blazed, with his eyes shut, at all that went past.
At the end of the day, when they counted the score,
Paddy hadn't shot one, while McDougall had four.
Johnny Murphy was top, for he shot twenty-five
At Peter O'Mulligan's wallaby drive.

When the sun had gone down, and the shooting was done,
There was dancing and feasting and flirting and fun.
Johnny Murphy got drunk, while his young brother Mat

  ― 65 ―
Courted Kitty McDougall, from Tumble Down Flat.
While Peter himself, quite unknown to his lady,
Sat on the verandah with Biddy O'Grady.
They danced till poor Jones was more dead than alive
At Peter O'Mulligan's wallaby drive.

O'Grady sought Biddy the moment he missed her,
And came on the pair as O'Mulligan kissed her.
Then their joy was diluted; O'Grady showed fight,
While O'Mulligan's missus made Biddy look white.
In a moment the house was like Donnybrook Fair;
There were heads in the fireplace, and heels in the air.
And though Paddy, the stockman, to part them did strive,
He got floored - at O'Mulligan's wallaby drive.

Poor Kitty McDougall lost all her false hair,
While O'Grady got scalped with the leg of a chair;
Johnny Murphy struck Paddy, who called him a liar,

  ― 66 ―
And, upsetting the lamp, set the whole house on fire.
There was fire in the parlour, and smoke in the hall,
And a blaze in the room that was cleared for the ball,
And the ladies who'd fainted, they had to revive
Or be baked - at O'Mulligan's wallaby drive.

Then they rallied round Peter, their friendship returning,
And they pulled down his house, to prevent it from burning;
When the fire was put out, they all shouted, “Good night!”
And then saddling their horses, were soon out of sight.
When the last one was gone, Mrs. Mulligan rose
And she said, as she wiped a big tear from her nose,
"When ye want more divarsion to kape you alive,
I presume, faith! ye'll get up a wallaby drive.”

Then, as phœnix-like, Peter arose from the ashes,
With his whiskers all singed, and his eyebrows and lashes,

  ― 67 ―
He exclaimed, “By the ghost of Saint Patrick, I swear -
If I ever recover my eyebrows and hair,
That there's only one small piece of hunting I'll do,
Faith! I'll hunt for O'Grady, and give him his due.
As for you, Divil take you! I'll skin you alive,
If you ever more mention a wallaby drive!”