While I was drinking in the Vic’
out Goondiwindi way,
This burnt out ringer on his horse
reined in and said, “G’day!”
We’d all been playing 301,
so asked could he join in.
“Sure thing old mate!” we all agreed,
which brought a toothless grin.
“The name is Paddy Mellon boys …
I’ll have a pot please love …
I feel I’m on a winning streak
or there’s no God above.”
He sat there perched upon his stool
between the pub’s doorway
and held the reins of his old horse,
which sensed he planned to stay.
The pots went down and time flashed by,
he won near ev’ry game,
but Paddy’s knees were bowing fast,
his aim a bit the same.
By late that ‘arve the wobbly boot
had taken full control,
old Paddy’s winning streak had gone
and Nick had claimed his soul.
Poor Paddy’s darts they missed their mark,
the grog had soaked his brains,
but Paddy he just blamed the horse,
“Stop pulling on the reins!”
The boys in blue had called in too
and warned him there and then,
“We catching you riding that horse drunk
you’ll see a cell ag’en.”
Old Paddy broke and out of luck
resigned to riding off
and as he rode into the night
he gave a smoker’s cough.
He’d only gone a block or two
when who should drive on past.
None other than the boys in blue,
who turned around real fast.
But Paddy though had seen them too
and instinct then took hold.
He jumped behind the saddle while
his grin was brazen, bold.
The constable looked up at him;
he’d teach this ringer what.
“We told you not to ride that horse,
you poor old drunken sot!”
But Paddy said, “You’ve got it wrong,
I am not riding Sir.
You see on this old horse my friend
I’m just a passenger!”
From the Book Laughter & Tears From the Bush.