EAST WALL ALL THE DAY (Paul O’Brien)

 

Brought up beside McArthur’s shop, it was small and it was red

We bought the broken biscuits the bainne and the bread

Bulls’ eyes were two a penny, for truppence you got eight

When you were short on coppers you could put them on the slate

All the day, down by Bargy, whistling all the way

 

Short trousers in the winter, your schoolbag on your back

Walking home from Larriers along the railway track

Or hanging ‘round the slaughter-house to chase the sheep that strayed

Or down to Fairview Park to play football all the day

All the day, down by Bargy, whistling all the way

 

Sometimes we’d play hide and seek, sometimes relieve-i-o

Running through the Crescent and the back lanes we would go

Down by Andrewcetties and the butchers with his trays

With liver, mince and sausages laid out for all to see

All the day, down by Bargy, whistling all the way

 

When I was ten rain hail or shine I done a paper-round

Delighted with a weekly wage of almost half a crown

The last house on my list was number forty Bargy Road

And that’s where little Annie lived, she was nearly nine years old

All the day, down by Bargy, whistling all the way

 

Now sometimes my mind does wander down along the old East Wall

I can even smell the Tolka and hear the seagulls call

And somewhere in the distance I can hear my children say

“Ah, daddy’s down by Bargy, whistling all the way

 Ah, daddy’s down by Bargy, whistling all the way”