Armagh Revisited

“I wonder,” said St. Patrick, one evening up above,
“I wonder how they’re doing down below?”
He meant, of course, old Ireland, a place he used to love,
When he was just a mortal long ago.

“Do you know,” he told St. Peter, “I think I’ll go, a sthore,
To see my lovely children once again.
It’s fifteen hundred years or so since I was there before . . .
Sure the darlings must be all grown up since then.”

So he pressed his leather breeches and he brushed his coat of green
And he polished up his brogues till they shone,
Then he stuck a spray of shamrock in his battered old caubeen
And, swinging his shillelagh, he was gone!

He whistled ‘Toor‑al̴oor-al’ as he crossed the cloudy plain,
Thinking of the friends he soon would see
The gallant boys of Wexford and Kitty of Coleraine
And Danny Boy and Rosie of Tralee.

“We’ll have great gas,” said St. Patrick, as he went upon his way,
“They’ll be singing, they’ll be dancing all the while,
And they’ll surely have a hurling match in honour of the Day —
The Saints should beat the Scholars by a mile!”

©: John Looney.

This is the first part of a longer poem printed in the 1983 edition of ‘Contact’, the annual magazine of the Parish of Aghinagh, near Macroom, County Cork.

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