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 A Word For The Begrudgers

I've been compromised, chastised, criticised and ill-advised

I've been supervised, scrutinised, analysed and pushed aside

And I can take it all, take it in my stride

But baby, baby, baby, baby, baby, don't patronise


I've been bored, I've been floored, I've been sore, I've been shown the door

I've been implored, explored, deplored and asked for more

And I can take it all, take it all on board

But baby, baby, baby, baby, baby, I won't be ignored


I've got a word for all the mofo mothers

For everyone who ever wished me ill

Got a word for all the begrudgers

We know what that word is


I've had inattention, condescension, every time my name got mentioned

Bad intentions, big pretensions

And not a whole lot of comprehension

And I can take it all without exception

But baby, baby, baby, baby, baby, now we're talking redemption


It can't be overstated, I've been underrated

I've been laughed at behind my back

But you can stick your grinning, this is just the beginning

And baby, baby, baby, baby, baby, that's a fact



Nobody Knows (for the Ma)

As you lay sleeping, I kissed you goodbye

I closed the door softly, I had tears in my eyes

I knew it was over, I knew it was through

But I knew that I’d never stop loving you


I know there were times when I wasn’t there

But I know that you knew just how much I cared

I know there are reasons and cycles and seasons

I know that the wheel will come round again


Nobody knows where the circle begins

Nobody knows where it ends


I’ve got a few photos from long, long ago

I take them out sometimes when I’m feeling low

They make me feel better, they make me feel good

But a picture’s a picture, not real flesh and blood


I see the light like silk on the water

Nights drawing in, days getting shorter

I know that the sun that I feel on my face

Also shines down on your resting place



Sunday Morning Walks After Mass (for The Da)

We used to take a walk, just you and me

Where the two rivers and the canal run out to the sea

The city was always quiet on Sundays way back then

A day of rest for the working men

Across the bridge and down the steps

Weeds in the dried-up grass, boats and old fishing nets

Jinny-Joes blowing across the black dirt track

Flowers growing wild out through every crack

My small hand in your old leather glove

It looked cracked and worn, but it felt like love

I still remember how it felt after all this time

How proud I was to hold your hand in mine

The canal would shine and sparkle as it tumbled out through the locks

Cranes on tracks through the cobble stones down along the docks

We'd cross the river on the ferry, then we'd come straight back

This was our own little world

After you'd gone, your coat hung in the hall

She kept it there and I'd see it every time I called

I still see it in my mind and it takes me back

To our Sunday morning walks after mass

The factories, coal boats on the quays

The Broken Wall, wheat lorries on the streets

The gas works, the dog track and the mills

The Bottle House, the Iron Bridge

The rivers still run and the tides still ebb and flow

But the ships are gone, factories all shut down

Sometimes I walk those street but now I walk alone

It's not the same, it doesn't feel like home

Everything changes but not some things inside

Like memories of you that I keep alive

Sometimes the mirror takes me by surprise

And I think it's you, looking through my eyes

Maybe some day someone will think of me

And remember the way I used to be

Some small hand in some old leather glove

That looks rough and worn, but feels like love



The Lockdown Blues 2020

We're all alone when we want to walk, we use the phone if we need to talk

Complete lockdown is the price we pay till this dreaded virus goes away

Social gathering is out of bounds, schools are empty, there's not a sound

Children bored, they can't socialise but it's far more scary than they realise


Got the lockdown blues 2020

Time to think, we all got plenty

You've got your thoughts, I've got mine

I'm thinking when this is over I'll see you down the line


No more visits to the local hairdresser, her hair will soon be grey, God bless her

No more bingo or games of cards, we're all confined to our own backyards

The parks are closed, there's no games to play, gates locked up by the GAA

The weekly Lotto put on hold, promoters grounded so they can't be sold


We've got our orders to stay at home, to our neighbours house we dare not roam

Families only combined to walk, alone for others, no stops, no talk

The grandchildren too must stay away, they're told come back another day

They'll tell the story in years to come, confined to home with Dad and Mum


Trade and business too must stop except for the chemist and the grocery shop

Marts and markets all shut down, an eerie silence every village every town

We spare a thought for our friends away, they can't come home, abroad they'll stay

Yours truly too must stay at home and talk to friends on the telephone

Patsy And Nora (for my uncle, Patsy Daly, and his sweetheart Nora)

Patsy was the eldest of a family of six

He was always kinda frail, he was always kinda sick

Their little house was overcrowded, they didn’t have a lot

But they always had plenty of the stuff that can’t be bought

When he fell in love with Nora it was like his life began

He started dreaming dreams, he started making plans


Now work was hard to come by back in 1932

So he signed up for the army, there was nothing else to do

But his army life was over by 1933

They didn’t want their soldiers infected with TB

So they took back his rifle, they took back his hope

Gave him a one-way ticket and sent him home broke


Some of us survive and some of us don’t

Even when we’re all in the same boat

It seems that our luck is all that we’ve got

Some of us are lucky, some of us are not


Patsy saw his days out in that little house

Lying in the bed or wrapped up on the couch

When Nora came to see him, they’d sit there holding hands

But she knew she was holding on to a dying man

She told him that she loved him, she said he could depend

She would stand by him, right until the end


But late in the winter of 1934

Nora came by one last time and never came no more

She went back to her family in a Tipperary town

Patsy couldn’t understand why she’d let him down

He spent all his time in bed now, Nora on his mind

Staring at the ceiling, waiting for his time


It was on a sunny morning, a few days before he went

The postman brought a letter that Nora’s sister sent

She said Nora knew her time was up when they met her at the train

She said before she passed away she was calling Patsy’s name

Patsy just asked for the door to be closed

He said that he wanted to be on his own



Balls To The Wall

It's been go, go, go, balls to the wall

But warm summer kisses cool off in the fall

You can take your clock down offa my wall

My time is all my own, it's not your call


I'm gonna lie low, low, low, don't bother to call

Gonna give myself a break, get away from it all

I don't want to feel my back up against your wall

Don't try to change my mind, don't say nothing at all


Is this really the end or just going round in circles again
We've been down this road so many times before
Someone give me advice
Somebody read me my rights
Someone tell me I know what I'm doing


I'm gonna say no, no, no, I'm not gonna play ball

Why don't you take a look at the writing on the wall

You don't know, know, know, you don't know me at all

This is as far as we're going, it's been a long long haul


She Was An Angel To Me

I was sitting at the bar on a cold winter's night

Snow on the runway, they'd grounded all flights

The old man beside me looked right in my eye

He said “she was an angel to me”


I bought him a drink and he talked for a while

He spoke of his woman, his angel, his bride

How he found her and loved her and lost her again

He said “she was an angel to me”


She was an angel to me, ah she really was

Talked like a sister would, laughed like a brother would

Danced like no other could, loved like a lover should

She was an angel to me, she really was

She was an angel to me


Well he watched from a distance like men sometimes do

Took his time hoping she'd notice him too

It didn't take long, they both knew what they knew

She was an angel to me


Half a lifetime had passed when she slipped away

How he treasured those years how he cherished each day

How he still saw her face in the morning sun's rays

She was an angel to me


Now my number was called and I wished him goodnight

I thought of my own love, I thought of our life

And I smiled to myself as I boarded my flight

That old man was an angel to me


One Drink At A Time

You can climb right up to the mountain top

But then you have to come down again

Spend all your life storming heaven with your prayers

And lose your faith in the end

I used to think that this would be forever

But then the world came and put me right

Now I'm drinking in the daytime

I don't wanna go home at night


Another bottle of wine

Getting close to the borderline

Can't think about today

Don't wanna talk about last night

Another pain in the head

Another struggle getting out of the bed

I'm gonna take it one drink at a time

Give me another bottle of wine


I did every thing I was supposed to

I worked hard, I never let up

I got everything I ever wanted

That was never gonna be enough

Cos there's questions that don't have answers

And there's blessings that are really a curse

Now I'm hoping that it's gonna get better

And I'm praying that it doesn't get worse

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