See also: The Cremation of Sam McGee by Robert W. Service
Well, I couldn’t stand his nonsense, so aheld of him I took
and I gave him such a baetin’ as he’d get in Donnybrook.
He hollered me the murther, and to get away did try
and swore he’d nivver write again, “No Irish Need Apply.”
He made a big apology, and I bid him then goodbye,
sayin’, “When nixt you want a baetin’, write ‘No Irish Need Apply.'”
Well, some may think it a misfortune to be christened Patrick Dan,
but to me it is an honor to be born an Irishman.
Sure, I’ve heard that in America, it always is the plan
that an Irishman is just as good as any other man.
A home and hospitality they nivver will deny
to strangers here, or ever write, “No Irish Need Apply.”
Oh, but some black sheep are in the flock: “A drrty lot,” says I;
a daecent man would nivver say, “No Irish Need Apply.”See below
Happy St. Patrick’s Day yesterday!
If you are a dreamer, come in.
If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar, a hope-er, a pray-er, a magic bean buyer,
If you’re a pretender, come sit by my fire,
for we have some flax-golden tales to spin.
Come in.Shel Silverstein, from Where the Sidewalk Ends
Today, because yesterday was Valentine’s Day, I am posting a poem that I … ahem … love. No, it’s not by me, nor is it by G.K. Chesterton. (Though he did write some great poetry.) It’s by a rising star who happens to be a friend of mine … Benjamin Ledford.
The Normans came to England and they found the Saxons there.
The Saxons said “Go back to France! We’re first! This isn’t fair!”
But the Saxons came from Germany where they had lived before,
And came and found the Angles living on the English shores.
The Angles were from Denmark whence they came in viking raids,
And they conquered tidy towns and forts that Roman troops had made.
The Romans came from Rome, of course, that goes without much saying,
And when they invaded England it was Celts that they were slaying.
Some Celts had fled to Scotland as they hurried to escape,
But others were already there — the Picts for goodness’ sake!
And before the Picts or Celts or Brits or any of these others,
There was someone building Stonehenge in the south with giant boulders.
And those Stonehenge folks, well surely, they’re the oldest Englishmen.
But could it be, or do you wonder,
Was there someone there before them?Ben Ledford, 2021
Now, go forth and read this to your history students!
There was a big high wall there
that tried to stop me.
And a sign was painted:
It said “Private Property.”
But on the back side
it didn’t say nothin’ …
This land was made for you and me.Woody Guthrie, This Land Is Your Land
… but this apocalyptic song has been running through my head lately.
Ah love, let us be true
To one another! for the world, which seems
To lie before us like a land of dreams,
So various, so beautiful, so new,
Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,
Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;
And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night.from Dover Beach, by Matthew Arnold
Apparently, based on the YouTube comments, the following song has been out for six months. I just discovered it last week, playing the country station on my car radio while running errands, and it quickly became my theme song for the week.
It’s just so doggoned unifying.
Also, I like the phrase “one big …”, as in an earlier Andrew Klavan quote, “It was like the whole country was one big series of bad choices.”
And though this song is upbeat, there is a certain insight to calling life “one big country song,” because country as a genre can be pretty tragic. You know what they say: if you play a country song backwards, you get your wife back, you get your truck back, you get your dog back …
In the video at the bottom, skip all the initial stuff which you may find to be a rant. He starts talking about Imagine at 37:30. He reads the existing verses, then makes up two of his own. Or, you can just read my transcription below.
“Imagine only good stuff happening
And really good stuff, too
No bad stuff, no sad stuff,
And no mad stuff too.
Imagine everyone’s happy
And they are being real nice
No one’s being super mean
And there are no fights.
“That’s just something from my heart. That’s where my heart is right now. You know, listening to this song, he covered a lot of stuff that we shouldn’t have like greed and hunger, but I’m thinkin’ … all the bad stuff. You know?”
“Colored People,” the classic song by D.C. Talk.