Tuesday, 23 October 2007

Bak Roon Wur Toon

Hae ye iver thocht bak tae tha wye things were years ago whur ye leeve? Bellymoney is a toon that haes changed bigly ower tha years but tha Toon Rhymer knows an oul boy who mines it richtly an shared a memory ir twa wie him aboot it.

A Danner Bak Roon Tha Oul Toon
Awa frae it aa in tha dark o mae room,
Mae mine goes bak tae mae times in tha Toon
As A watch tha peats glowin in tha grate ferninst mae
A hae tae accept that mae age is against mae
A hae nae enemies left fer A've ootleeved them aa
An freens are as scarce fer A've hardly nane left ava
So mae nichts are spent thinkin bak tae years ago
Whin A wus fitter an shairper an wisnae sae slow
Comin alang Castle Street wie Mickey Mallon as mae guide
Fer a dram in Rosie Higgins's Mickey follad mae inside
An he'd gie me tha benefit o his lay man's laws
An he'd bae up fer a challenge, nae metter tha cause
At tha enn o tha street, A'd meet Bobby Jake
An enjoy ten minutes banter o tha best Toon craic
A big hello frae John Johnston as he heads tae his shap
There's naeboady rushin; naeboady in a flap.
A wud waak up Main Street bae tha Manor Hotel
An see Jake Annerson gettin his boots aa ready tae sell
Across tha street Archie Hart wud bae sherpenin a blade
Gettin set fer a day o his butcherin trade.
A hear tha loud hollerin o Clark Duffin as weel
Gulderin an wavin an clickin his heels
Bae tha clock tha doag men are tellin their lies
Aboot breakin track records an wunnin big prizes
Big Archie Atcheson waaks by ram rod straight
Tae park his bike behint tha Diamond Bar gate
Whur half tha Toon parks their transport aa in a row
They're minded an guarded fer thruppence a go
As A head fer tha Pop In fer a warm tasty dish
A hear Henduck Wallace oot sellin his fish
"Herrin Alive", he gouls ower an ower
Tae tha fish are aa gone ir his throat turns sore!
But afore A get seated tae enjoy mae feed
A wake wie a start an see tha fire's near deid
It's bak tae reality an A'm gye sorry it's so
Fer A preferred tha Toon an it's characters as they were years ago.

A Ficht That Went Wrang

It's aptly no as common noo (at least, no sae much taaked aboot) but at yin tim, wur country wus host tae oany number o cock fichts. Heth it wus a gye blidy pastime an cruel forbye but it didnae aye enn that road. Tha Toon Rhymer tells iz aboot yin ficht his great-granda wus at whur tha oul maun wus lucky no tae bae jailed!

Tha Cock Ficht
It wus a simmer evenin wie hardly an air
An a meetin wus takin place amang freens,
In a corner o tha moss awa up bae tha Leck
As they went doon tha rodden wae a glint in ther een.
Tha screeghin o roosters bein cerried in crates
Cud bae hear't as money wus bein checked.
Fer it wisnae tae bother aboot tha cuttin o peats
That this gaitherin wus takin place at tha Leck.
Tha bets were placed an tha roosters prepared
As tha crowd gaithered roon fer tha show.
Whin oul John hear't tha caa o nature gie a goul
Sae hae set aff doon tha rodden tae go.
Staunin nearhan peats aa laid oot in rows
He hear't whistles blawin an roars in tha nicht
Hadn't tha polis landed tae bring them aa in
It had bin a gye lucky caa o nature aa richt!
Watchin his freens rinnin through heather an bracken
Bein chased bae tha lang airms o tha law
Oul John rouled up his sleeves an turned hissel aroon
An tha peats were tha furst things he saw.
So doon he got an he started tae wurk wie them
An bae tha time tha polis had his freens aa awa
John had echteen rickles set up in a row
An a score o castles built there an aa!

Monday, 22 October 2007

Mair Aboot Tha Hamecomin

A wee while bak, wae tuk a luk at whit some yins caa "Tha Plantation". As wae pointed oot, it wus mair a hamecomin nor oanythin else. Tha Toon Rhymer explains that here.

Return O Tha Exiles
In boats an ships they landed,
Oan an unforgien shore:
Tae till tha lan an break in grun
Lake ther faithers in days o yore.
These fowk wernae planters
Whin aff tha boats they filed
They were comin hame frae Scotland
Whur yinst they'd bin exiled.
But this tim these Dalriadic fowk
Wud naw bae driven oot again,
They were here tae stay in ther faithers lan
Regardless o famine, persecution ir pain.

Bae Wary O Wars

Even frae whin A wus a wean, A aye heared politicians an their kine taakin in glowin terms aboot tha sacrafice o wur young fowk in yin war ir anither. Yin thing that wus aye pointed oot tae me wus tha fact that maist o them daein tha taakin med brave an sure that their ain yins were niver oan tha front line - nir them ither! Tha Toon Rhymer sums aa that up below:

Whit War Wull Enn Aa Wars?
Tha "War Tae Enn Aa Wars" ended in nineteen echteen
An tha widas an orphans wiped tha tears frae their een.
Lloyd George toul tha country "It'll naw heppen again!"
Thar wull bae nae mair greetin, sufferin ir pain.
Twanty-yin years later, whin thon orphans wur tha age,
They wur sent aff tae France, tha oul foe tae engage.
Anither sax years o deein o a generation o wur men
Follad bae tha oul lie, "It'll naw heppen again
An then thar wus Korea whur wur boys hear't tha caa
An in thon foreign fiels wur finest did faa
An as tha widas an orphans wrung thar hauns an gret,
A politician sed gravely, "Lest we Forgyet".
But sure foarty years bak, wur ain troubles tane aff
They killed awa at their nybours an then had a laugh
As they watched their victims funerals safe in their hames
An within a fortnicht, they'd even forgot aa their names.
"We'll niver surrender!" tha politicians gouled an roared
An "We'll niver abide bae ony power sharin accord".
But sure they brocht them intae power oot o tha blue
Naw carin a whit fer tha lakes o me an you.
So tha nixt tim a war starts, tell yer sins "Stay at hame".
Fer tha politicians rants wull aye bae tha same -
They'll taak tha taak but they'll shane sell iz oot
So wait tae ther sins enlist an then let yours folla suit.

A Wile Narration

Afore A start here, A want tae mak it clear that naeboady here haes ocht agin bagpipes! Heth, thar's naethin cud bate a guid playin pipe band. But it haes tae bae said that whin someboady is joost larnin hoo tae play tha pipes, it's no aa music tae tha lugs. Tha Toon Rhymer foon that tae bae tha case tae!

Roosty Pipes
A mind it richtly, tha furst tim A heared it
A woke up wie a jump oot o bed!
Tha narration wus naethin lake A'd e'er heared afore
It's a wunner mae lugs hadnae bled!
A sprachled an spaltered across tha length o tha room
Puttin oan mae as quick as A cud dae
Tho A done mae best tae droon oot tha noise
A joost had tae know whur it wus comin frae.
A lukked in ivery room in tha hoose
But thar wus naethin there A cud see
That cud bae guilty o makin that serious noise
That wus tormentin an vexin poor me!
So then A went oot tae tha gairden
An tha louder an mair deafenin it got;
Lake forty banshees in a choir in tha nicht
Lake a baste that deserved tae bae shot!
An then as A turned tha corner o tha hoose
A saw mae brither playin pipes oan his ain
Unless cats in a bag bein swung roon an roon,
It wus mair nor eneuch tae drive ye insane!
Sez he, "A'm only tunin them, sure
They'll soun tha best afore wile lang".
Sez me, "Cud ye no hae bin a singer?
Fer A'd hae suffered less frae yin o yer sangs!"

Sunday, 21 October 2007

Tha Wather Forecaster

Yin thing we aa seem tae taak aboot whin we meet ither fowk is tha wather. A'm sure ye hae done it! Ye meet some yin comin alang tha street an tha furst thig ye say is "That's a quare day" ir "Luks lake it cud rain". Tha Toon Rhymer knows a boadie lake that but as ye wull see here, tha boadie he knows isnae lakely tae git a job wie tha Met office!

Tha Forecaster
If there's yin boadie A'll niver forget
It'll bae wee Barney frae doon wur street
Fer nae metter whit tha wather is lake
He'll mak a forecast each time we meet.
It's aye optimistic an it's aye upbeat
It wudnae metter if it wus lashin aa day
Barney wud aye see tha bricht side
An wud aye hae somethin heartenin tae say.
In a thunnerstorm if iver ye meet him
He'll say"A think it's gan tae clear"
An if lichtnin wus strikin in angry forks
He'll aye smile an say "Och niver fear".
If hail tha size o golf balls faa
An lee ye wie throbbin ears
He'll say "Sure this wather wull bae changin
Afore ye know it tha Spring wull bae here".
Whin sna is faain an pilin in drifts,
He'll come by wie his weltons oan
He'll say "A think tha thaw is comin
An sure aa this sna wull bae gone".
Yin mair thing A'll aye mind aboot his predictions
Nae metter whur A leeve ir fer hoo lang
Is that ivery forecast he iver gien me
Wus almaist aaways sure tae bae wrang!

Friday, 19 October 2007

Ullans is nae twang!

Yin thing A aye hated wus tha wye teachers an yins A went tae schule wie aye referred tae Ulster Scotch (ir Ullans) as naethin mair nor an accent ir a twang. It niver wus only that but its only lately that tha leid wae taak an screeve haes bin gien legal recognition as a leevin leid. Tha Toon Rhymer agrees an haes this tae say aboot it.

Mair Than A Twang

A've joost bin considerin tha wurds that A use

Whin taakin tae mates ir expressin mae views;

Tha Ulster Scotch leid, A'm gye heppy tae taak

Tho thar's aptly sniggerin gan oan ahint mae bak.

Whin A'm oot fer tha nicht an noisy fowk A'm among

A'll say "Wheesht" ir "Cud youse yins naw houl yer tongue"

Instead o "Potatoes or Fries?" A'll say "Prootas ir chips?"

An if its coul A'll say A'm founderin when tha frosty air nips.

An upper class woman micht bae "A snottery oul blade"

Whin she tells aa aroon hur aboot tha catter she's made.

I say "ferninst" instead o opposite and "heid" instead o head,

A'll say mae granda is "deid" whin A'm meanin he's dead;

If A say that A'm "Bate" it means A'm lukkin at defeat;

If A see cows in a fiel, A'll say "Luk at them kye",

If someone's "Intae Themsels", it means that they're shy.

At nicht whin A'm tired, A'll say that A'm done

A'll tell fowk A done richtly if A fin oot A've won;

The middle aged Romeo is joost a fool oul cod

Spalterin oor tha dance fleur lake a horse needin shod

If A'm coul A'll bae starvin, an no hungry ava -

A'm taakin foreign in London but untherstud in Buckna.

So tha moral o tha rhyme is forgyet society's conventions

An taak tha wye ye aye did withoot airs ir pretentions

An bae proud tae spake tha leid o tha boul Ulster Scot

Tha leid so moany o wur nybours haes sadly forgot!