Please help identify sci-fi book (The Ballad of Baby Boo)

Hiya. I’ve been lurking around here recently, and this is my first post. I thought I would see if anyone here can help me identify a science fiction book I read about 20 years ago. I don’t recall the title or author, nor even enough of the plot to try to summarize it for you. I recall a ditty that was near the front of the book, though, which has stuck with me ever since:

The Ballad of Baby Boo

Papa was a catcher on the company team
Slowing down the rocks as they came down the beam
Some of ‘em were low ones
Some of ‘em were high
Thirty tons of ore in the blink of an eye

Mama was a sprayer in the company tanks
Kept from going crazy by the company tranks
Bees can’t stand the spinning
Bees can’t hardly stand
Mama trucks down aisles pollinating by hand

One day Papa slipped up as it came across the plate
Sixteen tons of ore like the black hand of fate
Burn you mother thruster
Thruster she won’t burn
Papa’s ship is spinning like a funeral urn

Mama got called in by the company …

Damn your stupid husband!
Don’t give us any lip
Can’t you see how much it costs to replace that ship?

(there is one more stanza which I cannot recall)
If anyone can figure out the name or author of this book, I will be very grateful. I’ve googled like crazy, but have found nothing.


NEW DESTINIES, Fall 1987 (a quarterly magazine)

Online copy at :

Nice, but I think shadowthorne gave up after twelve years (last post was 2016).

Welcome to the Dope, btw. We’re all about getting that answer, no matter how long it takes. You’ll fit in here just fine.

ETA: But waif! The OP’s last activity was six weeks ago! He might actually see it!

Urchin, let’s hope he does!

Somebody make a thread about the longest time between a question being asked and answered! Not me, I’m not doing all that searching 3 minutes at a time.

I’m really curious about the discovery process here. Did you read the story recently and remember that someone had asked about it 14 years ago? How did this come about?