Oh, some, they like the sailor man when he comes back to shore, And some they like the beggar man that begs from door to door, And some, they like the soldier man with his musket and his can, But my delight can read and write, he's the bold librarian. Making his rounds in the library van, he drove out one dewy morn, And he met with the farmer's daughter and loudly he blew his horn. "Come in my bold librarian, and I'll mek thee a pot of tea. Me father and mother have gone to town and there's nobody here but me." "I have a book for your mother, dear, called, 'Love that dare not speak', And another for your old father called, 'Gun- -fighters of Mustang Creek', But nothing I have for you, dear," this li- -brarian did say, "But anything you shall request you shall have it right away." "Ooo," said the farmer's daughter and she glowed all over with fire. "Is it true that you can bring your readers anything they desire?" "Oh, yes," said the bold librarian, "Oh, yes, indeed I will. Take me up to your chamber and I'll show you my ... professional skill." So they went upstairs together and they laid down on the bed, And he faceted her in every de- -tail from `A' unto `Zed', 'Til he couldn't classify her under maidens anymore. He said, "Such dynamic service you've never had before." Now this librarian he arose and he put on all his clothes, And out of his coat pocket he drew handfuls of gold, Saying, "Take this, dearest Polly, for thee and thy baby. It really belongs to the Book Fund, but I'll give it all to thee." "Oh come, my bold librarian, now won't you marry me?" "Oh no, my dearest Polly, such things can never be, For married I am already to a quiet little thing. I've a first and second edition and a third coming out in spring." "But dost tha truly love me?" the farmer's daughter said. "What d'you mean," said the librarian, "Just be- -cause we've been to bed? In my most high profession love and sex cannot combine, Because SEX is 612.6 and LOVE, which I classify under virtues not otherwise accounted for, is 179.9" Come all you pretty fair maids, this warning you must heed; You must marry some simple ploughboy who can neither write nor read. For he may be poor and humble, but he'll love you the best he can. Have naught to do with that roving blade who drives the library van. And if you should go for your holidays to that village on the border And you hear a little boy call the cows in alphabetical order "Come up, Annie and Betty and Connie and ... Daisy and Ethel and Fan" Well then you will know it must be the son of the bold librarian.
recording: Andy Dawson at UCL Bloomsbury Conference 2011, Social Media and the Academy [Vimeo]
notes: Jessica Schneider's blog recounting Andy's performance [Wordpress]