Friday, July 13, 2007

What if "The Beave" were an Ulster-Scot?

Lets face it, I had given up on Habbie. I had decided that the vernacular of my forbearer's was beyond me. My daughter, said she liked my other stuff and wished I would write like I used too. I had consented to acquiesce. No more Ullans* for me....

Then, this poem just channeled through me.

I was thinking about my Dad, the family myth of his beloved old
"Kaiserr Henry J", and my childhood in Avon N.Y.....

This is me, and my older brother Kevin,
on Lacy Street, in Avon N.Y.(1959)
(Yes, thats me in my "droopy-drawers!)

Yeah, that's right, this poem channeled through me, and I am no longer reverse-engineering this stuff, so no translation is provided. That's o.k. though, I think I finally manged to do it well enough, so that anyone should be able to read and understand it as is:

Mae auld lang syne:

( For Bill Morrison, A story of my childhood written in "Ullans" (Ulster Scots) or "West Central Scots" The Language of Rabbie Burns.)

Quhan A wus jus a wee bairn

back in tha toun o Avon

Da wud take us tae tha Barbers

in hiz lyttle Henry Jay

circ'l roon tha park quhar

tha Civil War Canons lae

tha yin thon the' shat aff

on inadependance dae

Yea hadda gie way

tae tha sleepin dug

quha ina rod wud stae

Tha Mayr's nam wus Mulvaney

thons quhaur A gie mae yinst hairscoot

frae he wus tha Mayr, an tha Barber tae

A rememba hiz so' ful laf

ana snip-snip, o tha sizzer throo

mae hair az it fel yin mae lap

an mae Da an hiz croonies tae

tauking polotic o tha day

gif A wus guid, A got a Lolli

an ona Canons wus alowd tae play

bot thos auld tymes ar gon naw

an Avon's bot a 'burb tahdae

Tha auld tymes past awa

mae Da he' goon twa yier

Mulvaney nae langer cots hairs

an somyin els' iz tha may'r thyer

in mae memry styl it lyngers

Ya canna go bak the' sae

bot A hae brung ye thar

gif onie frae a momenary stae

an naw ye bin thar tae

gif thon mak's mae a bald birky

than sae beyit by an by

ye ownie saw yit, throo mae e'es

Sae rememba hiz so'ful laf

ana snip-snip, o tha sizzer throo

mae hair as it fel in mae lap

an mae Da an hiz croonies tae

tauking polotic o tha dae

gif A wur guid, A got a Lolli

an ona Canons cud play.

obeedude 11/july/07

So here is a picture of the actual Civil War Cannons, at the Soldiers Monument, in the Central Green, Avon N.Y. My memory of climbing and playing on it is more properly placed in the early sixties, when we would return there in the summer time, to spend our vacations at Mulvaney's Camp on Canisius Lake.

Avon in those days was very much the "Andy of Mayberry" type of town. The kind of place that only exists today in the naive baby boomer myth consciousness. (Pre-Vietnam, Pre- Summer of Love, still in the "Leave it to Beaver" National what-a-day-for-a-daydream frame of mind.)

And this is a 1951 Kaiserr Henry J. :

Whether or not I would have been old enough to have had an actual memory of riding in it in 1959 it is debatable. It is, as much a memory of Family Myth, as anything else.

So, this is the story behind the myth, or the myth behind the story. More succinctly: the nostalgia of My old long time ago: in the dialect of the Auld Lang Syne. Sorry saraH, I'll try to write more like you want someday, or perhaps you will read more like I write someday... My myth's will become your myth's, and you will have your own, old long time ago.

Paint the "The Geezer O'Beaver" colorful. Tha's a' A ax....


"Ulster-Scots" is basically the same as "West Central Scots" (the language of Rabbie Burns), a Germanic tongue of common origin with English. Scots is the most defining characteristic of the Ulster accent, most Ulster-Scots who have visited other parts of the English speaking world will testify that more often than not, they are mistaken as being from Scotland rather than Northern Ireland. While broad Ulster-Scots is only spoken in the more rural communities, everyone in Northern Ireland uses Ulster-Scots words and phrases in their everyday speech.


  1. Your writing and your stream of consciousness thoughts get more interesting and intriquing with each installment. Jerry Oliver

  2. Love the droopy drawers.
    Thanks for enlightening about the Henry J.

  3. Congrats! You've done it! Your big Sista' actually undertstood the poem and enjoyed the walk down memory lane. Maybe a good one to read to Mom? Love, jacque