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THE BEDSTEAD MEN
by
Flanders and Swann


Oh, when you're walking in the country,
Far from villages and towns,
When you're seven miles from nowhere and beyond,
In some dark deserted forest, or a hollow of the downs,
You may come across a lonely pool or pond.
And you'll always find a big, brass broken bedstead by the bank,
There's one in every loch or mere or fen.
Don't think it's there by accident,
It's us you have to thank,
The society of British bedstead men.

Oh, the hammer ponds of Sussex,
And the dewponds of the west,
Are part of Britain's heritage,
The part we love the best.
Every eel and fish and millpond
Has a beauty all can share,
But not unless it's got a big brass broken bedstead there.

So, we filch them out of attics,
We beg them from our friends,
We buy them up in auction lots with other odds and ends,
Then we drag them 'cross the meadows,
When the moon is in the sky,
So watch the wall my darling,
While the bedstead men go by.

The league of British bedstead men is marching though the night,
A desperate and dedicated crew,
Under cover of the hedges,
Always keeping out of sight,
For the precious load of bedsteads must get through.

The society for butting broken bedsteads into ponds
Has another solemn purpose to fulfil.
For our coastal sands and beaches,
All where waving willow wands,
Mark the borders of a river, stream or rill.

You will always find a single laceless, left-hand leather boot.
A bootless British river bank's a shock.
We leave them there at midnight, you can track a member's route,
By the alternating prints of boot and sock.

Oh, the lily ponds of Suffolk,
And the millponds of the west,
Are part of Britain's heritage,
The part we love the best.
Our riverbanks and seashores
Have a beauty all can share,
Provided there's a boot...
Provided there's a boot...
Provided there's at least one boot...
Three treadless tyres,
a half-eaten pork pie,
some oildrums,
an old felt hat,
a lorryload of tar blocks...

And a broken bedstead there.

 
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