“Oranges and limes!”, began one of the chimes,
“Ee, it’s good to be back, though m’ rope’s a bit slack.”
“What I want to know,” said the bell that sounds So,
“We was laid off, but what were t’ reason for that?”
“I don’t rightly know”, said t’ great bell tuned Do.
(False ending – i.e. slight pause, during which people who think the song has already finished may start to applaud, only to be interrupted by the the start of the next verse.)
“I’ve news about that”, piped oop t’bell tuned Bb.
“News? Pray announce!”, clanged several at once.
“Well, yon pigeon told E, who told it to me,
T’ chap wit’ t’ mitre (that reet stuck-up blighter,
who owns this ‘ere mill) set his self to do ill.
Apparent (though never, please, quote me, I ask)
‘e took spite agin t’ gaffer as-was charged wit’ t’ task
Of leadin’ t’ lads down below. Without doubt
This were grim for t’ workers, for ‘e locked ’em all out.”
F# chipped in, all cheerful, “Are they back on t’ job now?”
“Nay lad”, said Bb, “I’m sad to tell thou:
It takes more than t’ joy of our Lord’s resurrection
To calm down a boss, putting down insurrection.
Let’s us, for our brothers, still keep up our hopes.
But t’ bishop’s brought scabs in, to pull all our ropes!”