(Rudyard Kipling)






Barrack-Room Ballads. 38. The Shut-Eye Sentry


         Sez the Junior Orderly Sergeant
                  To the Senior Orderly Man: 
         Our Orderly Orfcers hokee-mut,1
                  You elp im all you can. 
         For the wine was old and the night is cold,
                  An the best we may go wrong, 
         So, fore e gits to the sentry-box,
                  You pass the word along. 

So it was Rounds! What Rounds? 
                                    at two of a frosty night,   
         Es oldin on by the sergeants sash, 
                                    but, sentry, shut your eye.   
An it was Pass! Alls well! 
                                    Oh, aint e drippin tight!   
         Ell need an affidavit 
                                    pretty badly by-an-by. 
  
         The moon was white on the barricks,
                  The road was white an wide, 
         An the Orderly Orfcer took it all,
                  An the ten-foot ditch beside. 
         An the corporal pulled an the sergeant pushed,
                  An the three they danced along, 
         But Id shut my eyes in the sentry-box,
                  So I didnt see nothin wrong. 

Though it was Rounds! What Rounds? 
                                    O corporal, old im up!   
         Es usin is cap as it shouldnt be used, 
                                    but, sentry, shut your eye.   
An it was Pass! Alls well! 
                                    Ho, shun the foamin cup!   
         Ell need, etc.   

         Twas after four in the mornin;
                  We ad to stop the fun, 
         An we sent im ome on a bullock-cart,
                  With is belt an stock undone; 
         But we sluiced im down an we washed im out,
                  An a first-class job we made, 
         When we saved im, smart as a bombardier,
                  For six-oclock parade. 

It ad been Rounds! What Rounds? 
                                    Oh, shove im straight again!   
         Es usin is sword for a bicycle, 
                                    but, sentry, shut your eye.   
An it was Pass! Alls well! 
                                    Es called me Darlin Jane!   
         Ell need, etc. 
  
         The drill was long an eavy,
                  The sky was ot an blue, 
         An is eye was wild an is air was wet,
                  But is sergeant pulled im through. 
         Our men was good old trusties 
                  Theyd done it on their ead; 
         But you ought to ave eard em markin time
                  To ide the things e said! 

For it was Right flank  wheel! 
                                    for  Alt, an stand at ease!   
         An Left extend! for Centre close! 
                                    O marker, shut your eye!   
An it was, Ere, sir, ere! 
                                    before the Colonel sees!   
         So he needed affidavits 
                                    pretty badly by-an-by.  
 
         There was two-an-thirty sergeants,
                  There was corprals forty-one, 
         There was just nine undred rank an file
                  To swear to a touch o sun. 
         There was me ed kissed in the sentry-box,
                  As I ave not told in my song, 
         But I took my oath, which were Bible truth,
                  I adnt seen nothin wrong. 

         Theres them thats ot an aughty,
                  Theres them thats cold an ard, 
         But there comes a night when the best gets tight,
                  And then turns out the Guard. 
         Ive seen them ide their liquor
                  In every kind o way, 
         But most depends on makin friends
                  With Privit Thomas A.! 

When it is Rounds! What Rounds? 
                                    Es breathin through is nose.   
      Es reelin, rollin, roarin tight, 
                                    but, sentry, shut your eye.   
An it is Pass! Alls well! 
                                    An thats the way it goes:   
      Well elp im for is mother, 
                                    an ell elp us by-an-by!

1 Very drunk.




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    1996
25.07.-13.08.2014
24-25.08.2014
   




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