Modern Street Ballads

When the present Police force was first organized it was composed of men decidedly inferior in physique, intelligence, and education, to those constables whose protection we enjoy. They were made the butt of every kind of coarse witticism, and were generally addressed by some slang name. Above all they were chaffed for their supposed partiality for the society of Cooks, and I reproduce one ballad bearing on this subject, a parody of the song of “Katty Darling.”


I’m waiting at the airey, Cookey, darling,
Your fire burns brightly, I can see:
Then hasten to your peeler, Cookey, darling,
For you know, my love, I’m waiting for thee.*

You know that ’twas last night you gave me
Only half a leg of mutton and a goose,
Then hasten to your peeler, Cookey darling,
Or on Sunday I shan’t be of any use.
                        Cookey, stunning Cookey!

I’m waiting at the airey, Cookey, darling,
Then bring me up somwthing good to eat,
Some lush for my stomach to be warming,
And the grub I’ll put away on my beat.
I can see wine, too, on the table,
Sent down because it was not bright,
To drink it, Cookey, you know I am able,
My love, you know, to put it out of sight.
                        Cookey, stunning Cookey!

I can see pies and puddings, Cookey darling,
Veal, ham, and every thing so nice,
I’m sure I shall go mad, Cookey darling,
If off that beef I haven’t a two pound slice.
But I hear the sergeant coming,
Full well I know his power,
Then get the grub ready, Cookey darling,
And I’ll be back in half an hour.
                        Cookey, stunning Cookey!

* These four lines form the chorus.

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