Commentary

Happy Boxing Day!

When I sit down at my table clasp my hands and bow my head
Should I thank my heavenly landlord for my crust of daily bread
When the hunters in his stable and the hounds in his pack
Get the pickings of the harvest on which I break my back

There’s a fence around the common land put there by the law
It’s called hunting if you’re gentry but it’s poaching if you’re poor
And the law forgives your trespass like the hounds forgive the fox
You must number all your blessings with the ha’pence in your box

And it feels like winter spit to eat and hell to pay
It feels like Reynardine on Boxing Day

Now the forest is a shipwreck and the field is full of stone
And it’s hard to find a blade of grass some bastard doesn’t own
And they stopped the earth up for us and the drove us into town
Now they say there’s no work for us and they’ve closed the factory down

And it feels like winter spit to eat and hell to pay
It feels like Reynardine on Boxing Day

They’re still meeting in the country for the hunt and for the course
You can join the bloody gentry if you can afford a bleedin’ horse
And we raid along the railway and we pray we don’t get caught
God damn you merry gentlefolk for your money and your sport

And it feels like winter spit to eat and hell to pay
It feels like Reynardine on Boxing Day

When I sit down at my table clasp my hands and bow my head
Should I thank my heavenly landlord for my daily crust of bread
For the whip and hand that feeds us and keeps us in our place
One day we’ll turn and wipe the smile clean off your bloody face

And it feels like winter spit to eat and hell to pay
It feels like Reynardine on Boxing Day

And it feels like winter spit to eat and hell to pay
It feels like Reynardine on Boxing Day

The lyrics are by Robb Johnson, copyright Moose Music

It is recorded on Band of Hope’s Rhythm & Reds album which was released by Musikfolk in 1994.

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