Arrows pierced the hut when I was seven,
and my father fell stricken on the hob;
a chap with an axe finished off the job,
me Ma was screaming and I was silently
cheering them on, wide-eyed, frightened,
peering up from under the table.
Bad cess to me Daddy, thank God he's gone!
But me Ma, by God, was in floods of tears.
How can ye mourn him after all those years?
Ah, he was my heart and soul and moon and sun!
I shall never understand women.
The Sassenachs came when I was fifteen.
I was given a spear, shoved into the line;
sure, stay in the middle, lad, and ye'll be fine!
But they hit us in the middle and front and sides.
Dear God, these people had horses
the size of bloody giraffes,
and better dressed, too, than we were;
they sliced us up and killed us in dozens.
I went to ground in the woods of Wicklow,
and met a sweet girl, her name was Marie.
She said, young man, I cannot sleep with thee
until Ireland once again is free!
I slippy-slided back to Dubbalin:
sure where else could I hope to go?
Go local in Kyoto?
says it all.
That was then.
This is now.
I have the power of prediction.
I have lived six hundred years.
That's OK. No, really.
There is a notch in the hills,
just there, please look at the horizon
as the sun goes sinking down.
This is why I love Africa.
Egypt, on the other hand, reeks; it does;
it has the smell of the Pharaohs,
the stink of whips and chains.
And I love the Greeks
for no good reason.
They delivered us freedom
to smash 200 plates
to bouzouki music.
God, how we enjoy that!
When we are slightly drunk
there is nothing better
than to sling around plates
unless you want to slap your wife
or kill your girlfriend.
Love turns sour in the baking sun.
Inspector Robinson, CID,
made an arrest
Jesus, that took balls.
gathered close around him.
Been there? You know
just what I mean. Deadly.
Israel? Don't even think about it.
Fifty-five machine guns
for every hundred yards.
Trigger happy maniacs.
Bad fuckin bastards,
and only half of them
in uniform. I tell no lie.
If you and I could fly
across the deep and wine-dark sea,
there could be hope, there could be love and mystery,
in the ancient cradle of our history.
We could look to the rising of the sun,
but some idiot fucker has a gun.
Come little lad, come home to me.
This world pushes kids like you to take it:
when you grow to a man you can shove and shake it
like a tambourine; I seen
that so many, so many times.
And not a thing you do
(I loved that girl)
not a single solitary thing
(I loved her from the start)
the slightest difference.