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When Irish Eyes Are Smiling
My sainted Grandpa always said, "When Irish eyes are smiling, it's because they stole something and haven't been caught!" He should know...he was Irish!
Hibernian Hat Trick
Sure now, and I found a hat while walking
About a Dublin park one gloomy day.
Inside I heard the strangest voice talking,
Although blarney, I'm now inclined to say.
The foolish talk was of a Leprechaun
Who migrated across the Atlantic.
It seems that for many years he was gone,
And now his plea to return was frantic.
He'd sent the hat o'er the sea in his stead,
Traveling east on a swift conjured breeze.
He hoped to return the hat to his head
Back in the Emerald Isle, if you please.
The conversation inside the wide brim
At once included me in its scheming.
I was asked to do a favor for him -
As if alive, the hat band was gleaming.
Keeping time to the thick-brogued malarkey,
The green bow twinkled and fluttered about.
Until in anger it glowed more darkly,
As the voice inside started in to shout.
The message to me seemed quite audacious,
And, indeed, a blatant imposition.
By nature I'm inclined to be gracious,
But the voice's tone raised my suspicion.
I was ordered to place in the green hat
Funds in a considerable amount,
And directly on accomplishing that,
I was to hide it by a nearby fount.
All the booty would then be transported
By complicated and mystical means
To the Leprechaun, who was reported
To be in residence somewhere in Queens.
And then, after purchasing swift passage,
Once the sprite arrived on Ireland's green shores,
I would be paid for heeding the message
With a long life free of ailments and chores.
I admit I was intimidated,
Uncertain of just how I should behave.
Fearing if I even hesitated,
The vengeful consequences might be grave.
Superstition has long been my failing,
And the spirit world holds me in its sway.
Despite internal ranting and railing,
I knew the Leprechaun would have his way.
The tall green hat, ribbon bedecked and all,
Was, itself, imposing enough for me,
Holding me tight in its beguiling thrall.
No other course of action could I see.
With far less in my purse, I left the park,
And in a pub I told my strange story.
In a short while it began to get dark,
So it was home and a hot bath for me.
Outside, I grabbed a paper at the stand
And read about a scam with a new twist.
Some gullible gent was bilked at the hand
Of a clever concealed ventriloquist.
The Real Blarney Stone
The Blarney Stone is a stone set in the wall of the Blarney Castle tower in the Irish village of Blarney. The walls of the castle are 18 feet thick.
The stone is believed to be half of the Stone of Scone which originally belonged to Scotland.
Scottish Kings were crowned over the stone, because it was believed to have special powers. One of the stories says that an old woman cast a spell on the stone to reward a king who had saved her from drowning. Kissing the stone while under the spell gave the king the ability to talk sweetly. He was able to talk anyone into doing things.
The stone was given to Cormac McCarthy by Robert the Bruce in 1314 in return for his support in a battle.
Queen Elizabeth I wanted the Irish chiefs to agree to hold their own lands under title from her.
Cormac Teige McCarthy, the Lord of Blarney, handled her every Royal wish with clever promises keeping loyalty to the Queen without "giving in".
Elizabeth proclaimed that McCarthy was giving her "a lot of Blarney." This is how the story began that if you kiss the blarney stone you will also be able to make clever promises.
If ye kiss the Blarney stone, you'll talk sweetly it's said.
If you're an Irish laddie, the germs are worth the dread.
Cassie, the Irish lassie, was so sweet and fair.
Every laddie said there was none to compare.
The feat was very difficult indeed,
But the laddie wanted to win her heart and carry her off on his white steed.
So off he rode to the castle to kiss the stone,
And in his bag he carried a few scones.
Cassie was quite impressed that the lad would do this for her.
That he had the gift of Blarney to her it did not occur.
Soon they were wed, and he carried her away,
But the gift of Blarney was with him to stay.
Many a damsel he sweet talked and charmed with his winning ways.
Cassie ran away with the blacksmith to prove that Blarney isn't what pays.
The shamrocks on the hill
They call out to me still
Come run and play o'er there
Like children without care
But life has flown by fast
And running's in the past
Instead I sit nearby
Just gazing with a sigh
Remembering them still
The shamrocks on the hill
The Dance of The Little People
There's going to be a party
We’ve made a fairy ring,
To celebrate the birthday
of Finn the Fairy King
His majesty announced it
For everyone to hear
I’m making the arrangements
While Murphy brings the beer.
I’ve invited cousin Michael,
Himself from Donegal,
The scrawny Sean McCafferty
And Padraic Mor McCall.
The Queen of Connemara
Has promised she’ll be there
Wearing her best tiara
And moonlight in her hair.
Mick Doyle will play his fiddle
While Connelly calls the tune.
We’ll dance a fairy two step
Beneath a fairy moon.
And any mortal, passing by,
Will never hear a sound
For deaf the ear and blind the eye
When fairy folk abound.
Each tiny elf and fairy,
Each magic Leprechaun
Will dance the dance of angels
Until the break of dawn.
Then, when the evenings over;
Before the break of day
The toadstools and the clover
Must all be put away
Though Humankind may look askance
Upon our fairy ring,
They’ll never know we held a dance
In honour of our king.
Thomas Vaughan Jones (TVaughanJones@aol.com)
Willie Ryan's Lament
When Irish eyes are smiling,
Sure you'd better count your change.
They are all so beguiling
They could cure a dog of mange.
And when the beers are paid for,
And your money's on the bar
The pitcher begins to pour.
And the whiskey's in the jar.
'Tis then that they move in.
"Another pint of Guinness,
And then we'll toast to sin!"
Sings Maura, who's up from Innes.
And the barman pulls the stick,
And foam swills from the beer.
He thinks he's really slick,
And his smile looks like a sneer.
And then when the lights come on,
Maura's looking kind of drab.
Your money from the bar is gone,
She did a chug and grab!
And suddenly you're wise!
Like a harp, she played you
With her smiling Irish eyes,
And fancy footwork too.
When Irishmen think
They’ve seen a leprechaun,
They finish their drink,
Pay their tab, and move on.
And if he’s still there,
Come the following day,
It’s the “curse” they share,
And the cure goes this way:
To the pub once more,
Where it’s doubles you’ll down.
Get drunk as before,
As your troubles you’ll drown.
If the sprite lingers,
And you can’t blot him out,
Add two full fingers
Of rye to Guinness Stout.
Throw it back quicker,
Until it does the trick.
Nothing like liquor
To make any brogue thick.
As you sprawl on the floor,
But no longer hexed,
For the elf is no more.
From out of the place,
You’ll be hauled in awhile,
On your frozen face
You’ll be wearing a smile.
Your woman won’t mind
When they bring you home drunk,
For peace she will find
With you stiff in the bunk.
So the cycle goes,
Lads all seeking the cure.
The leprechaun knows
Irishmen can’t endure.
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