Moreton Bay

Moreton Bay was one of the first songs that opened my ears to         Australian Folk Song and I can remember being enthralled at hearing it for the first time sung by Peter Laycock. I had heard the more popular songs like ‘Click go the Shears’ and others sung by the station hands on the sheep station I was working on, Emu Springs In South Australia, but ‘Moreton Bay’ put me on the road to finding out more Australian songs.


MORETON BAY   Words Frank the Poet      Tune traditional Irish. 

 One Sunday morning as I was walking by Brisbane waters I chanced did stray

I heard a convict his fate be-wailing as on the sunny river bank he lay

I am native of Erin’s island ‘though banished now from my native shore

They tore me from my aged parents and from the maiden whom I adore.

I’ve been a prisoner at Port Macquarie at Norfolk Island and Emu Plains 

At Castle Hill and at cursed Toongabbie and all these settlements I’ve spent in chains 

But of all the places of condemnation and penal stations of New South Wales

To Moreton Bay I have found no equal excessive tyranny prevails each day.

For three long years I’ve been badly treated and round my legs heavy chains I wore

My back with flogging is lacerated and ofttimes covered with my crimson gore

And many a man through downright starvation lies mouldering underneath the clay

And Captain Logan he had us mangled all on the triangles of Moreton Bay.

Like the Egyptians and ancient Hebrews we were oppressed under Logan’s yoke 

Till a native Black lying there in ambush gave to this tyrant his fatal stroke

My fellow prisoners be exhilarated that all such monsters their fate should find

And when from bondage we’re liberated my former sufferings shall fade from mind.