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Banjo Paterson

(17 February 1864 – 5 February 1941 / New South Wales)

Waltzing Matilda


OH! there once was a swagman camped in the Billabong,
Under the shade of a Coolabah tree;
And he sang as he looked at his old billy boiling,
“Who’ll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.”

Who’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, my darling,
Who’ll come a-waltzing Matilda with me?
Waltzing Matilda and leading a water-bag—
Who’ll come a-waltzing Matilda with me?
Down came a jumbuck to drink at the water-hole,
Up jumped the swagman and grabbed him in glee;
And he sang as he put him away in his tucker-bag,
“You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda with me!”

Down came the Squatter a-riding his thorough-bred;
Down came Policemen—one, two, and three.
”Whose is the jumbuck you’ve got in the tucker-bag?
You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda with me.”

But the swagman, he up and he jumped in the water-hole,
Drowning himself by the Coolabah tree;
And his ghost may be heard as it sings in the Billabong,
“Who’ll come a-waltzing Matilda with me?”


Andrew Barton ‘Banjo’ Paterson

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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  • Rookie Fouzia Shazad (10/21/2012 12:37:00 AM)

    I liked this poem a lot but didn't understand it properly. Please can anybody explain it? (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Emancipation Planz (8/15/2008 9:41:00 PM)

    Cannot believe this has but not a single comment... came here a special... to remember school days, ants, and singing merrily through transitioning of baby teeth to big 'uns... morning assemblies in the sun... drinking from milk bottles at little lunch every day... and today... I sang again.. poetry to please... (Report) Reply

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