AUGURANDO UN FELICE NUOVO ANNO CON UNA BALLATA AUSTRALIANA

Augurando un Felice Nuovo Anno a tutti e presentandovi una celebre Ballata Australiana

Waltzing Matilda

Waltzing Matilda è la tipica ballata Australiana, scritta nella scorso secolo dal poeta Banyo Patterson e pubblicata per la prima volta, il Primo Gennaio del 1895, esattamente 127 anni orsono

A. B. (“Banjo”) Paterson
1864-1941
 

È una tipica Ballata dell’introterra Australiano scritta nello stile poetico di quell’era con una musicalità folcloristica che mette in risalto la vita, il carattere e la caratteristica dell’introterra.

La Ballata e` messa in risalto da una forte struttura ritmica capace di narrare un caratteristico fatto e avventure avvenute, usando una narrativa dialettistica,  piena di carattere, colloquiale e idiomaticamente Australiana che esplora temi linguistici di un tipico dialetto che si sviluppò in questo continente sin dall’inizio della colonizzazione.

La ballata racconta la storia di un vagabondo girovago (jolly swagman) che decise di campeggiare sulle rive di uno stagno (billabong) e che bollì l’acqua per il suo the in un calderino (billy)  e poi catturò ed uccise una pecora (jumbuck) e parte della carne la mise nel sacco delle provigioni (tucker bag)

Arrivò poi sul luogo il mandriano-padrone, a cavallo di un puro sangue (thourghbred) seguito da tre (one, two, three) poliziotti (troopers) per arrestare il vagabondo.

Ma questi preferì annegarsi nelle acque dello stagno piuttosto che farsi arrestare e sin da allora il suo spirito è presente sul luogo.

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 waterhole,
  Up jumped the swagman and grabbed him in glee;
And he sang as he stowed him away in his tucker-bag,
  “You’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 the squatter a-riding his thoroughbred;
  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 we.”

  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.

But the swagman, he up and he jumped in the waterhole,
  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?”

  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.


There have been minor word changes over the years as this poem has been set to music. The words above are however the original words written by “Banjo” and as they appear in his collected works of 1921 (16th edition)

“Swagman” – an intinerant farmhand, carrying his “swag” (his blankets) rolled into a cylinder

“Billabong” – a creek (normally with a pronounced “oxbow” bend)

“Coolabah tree” – a eucalyptus (gum) tree. (Also known as the coolibah tree)

“Waited till his billy boiled” – a “billy” is a tin can used to heat water over a campfire to make tea

“Jumbuck” – sheep

“Tucker-bag” – bag or box used to store food

“Squatter” – farmer/grazier who simply found good land and took possession; some became extremely rich

Published by carlogabbiwriter

Italian born, and living in Australia. I'm writing for the past 15 years in both Italian and English language. I pubblished my first book in USA and it's available with Amazon. I also wrote several long stories which are grouped under the name "A song of Love" and several other works available in my blog in Rosso Venexiano.

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