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The Bonfire on the Border

Brendan Behan
Language: English


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[1937]
In “Brendan Behan Sings Irish Folksongs and Ballads”, Spoken Arts (196?), ripubblicato in cd nel 1997.

Scritta da Brian O’Higgins, che negli anni tra le due guerre fu una figura di spicco prima dell’Irish Sinn Féin e poi dell’IRA Army Council

Nell’estate del 1937, Giorgio VI e la Regina Elisabetta, incoronati di fresco, decisero di fare una visita ufficiale in Ulster, giusto per ribadire la soggezione del nord Irlanda alla corona inglese... Ma quando, il 28 luglio, il corteo reale si recò a Belfast, i repubblicani risposero alla provocazione e “salutarono” i sovrani a modo loro: appiccarono il fuoco ai posti di dogana lungo il confine tra le contee sotto dominio inglese e l’Irlanda.
Twas on July the twenty-eighth
In the year of thirty-seven,
A fire was lit without a grate
And the flames leaped high to heaven.
Our King and Queen came sailing down
The Lough in the best of order
And we welcomed them to Belfast town
With a bonfire on the Border.

The Queen put a muffler round her neck
Assisted by her weemin,
The King walked up and down the deck
Surrounded by his G-men.
He asked "What is that glare I see?"
The reply was there in order:
"It´s Ireland united in loyalty
With a bonfire on the Border !"

Some say the spark was Ulster´s own
Some say it was extraneous,
A man in Down said it lit on its own
The combustion being spontaneous.
A lad who loves his King and Queen
And stands for Law and Order,
Says the flames were Orange, White and Green
In that bonfire on the Border.

They may prance and dance in Belfast Town,
They may croon ´Whereas´ in Dublin;
They may sever the Empire from the Crown,
But they might as well not be troublin´
Neither Lay Tribunal nor Legal Bench,
Nor turnkey, tout or warder,
Nor all the Boyne water can ever quench
That bonfire on the Border!

Here´s to the lads that played the game,
Here´s to the minds that planned it,
Here´s to the hands that lit the flame,
Here´s to the winds that fanned it:
May it blaze again from shore to shore
Consuming our land´s disorder:
May it leap and roar from shore to shore
Till it burns away the Border!

Contributed by Alessandro - 2010/2/25 - 15:23



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