Sunday, August 02, 2009

The Lost Ness Monster - the Ulster-Scots "Grendel" ?!

Just back in from 10 days or so in Brittany. Glad to see "The Ulster-Scots language future" post stimulated a bit of discussion in the comments, and in a good few emails I was sent by folk who'd read it. There are big issues to be faced. I don't have the answers, but hopefully using this platform to raise some of the questions will help stimulate some discussion.

While we were away we visited the excellent Oceanopolis aquarium at Brest - and on the way back I composed a ridiculous poem to entertain the weans. They love monsters, blood and guts, and the "Horrible Histories" series - so here's a poem about a monster that surfaces every 5000 years to eat the folk of the Ards Peninsula. After all, Sir Thomas Smith wanted it, Hamilton & Montgomery wanted it - so why not some terrifying prehistoric Godzilla too?

It's just a rough draft, it's in light-touch Ulster-Scots, and is not for the faint-hearted. It might be a Grendel type monster, and there are subtleties in here that only Peninsula folk will understand - but don't take it too seriously! Thankfully the weans loved it.

The Lost Ness Monster

Twas a coul oul nicht
No a boady in sicht
In the toon o’ Donaghadee
When fae behin the Isles
Cam’ twa terrible gowls
Fae a baste wi a hunner rid teeth

It had echt shinin een
Gien a bluid-curdlin’ scream
An the fowk aa ris oot o their beds
As it cam’ ashore
Gien a fearsome wild roar
It was hungry… an it wanted fed

It ate aa the fowk
Gien a rift an a boke
An then heedit doon tae Millisle
It scoffed thirty weans
An it sucked oot their brains
An for dessert had a big 99

Ballywalter was neext
On the menu o’ feast
An altho’ the fowk heerd it was comin’
The baste munched aa the men
Weans, coos, sheep an hens
An a sweet juicy plump wee roon woman

Ballyhalbert sae pretty
“The yin-sided city”
Had the tastiest fowk o them aa
So the baste wi a gulp
Chowed them aa intae pulp
An then licked aa the bluid aff its claas

Wi the sun comin up
The baste stapped for a sup
Wi the fishin boats at Portavogie
Then begun tae devour
Near a thousand an hour
Sweet wee yins, and chewy oul fogies

Kirkistown? Aye!
Portaferry forbye!
They were drive-thru and buffet in yin
Amang yellin and squeals
He had 10,000 meals
Ivery man, woman, wean he cud fin

Weel that was just starters
So he feasted the harder
On the Peninsula’s sons an its dochters
An roon by Kircubbin
He ate six hunner dizen
An then hoked in his nose for the snotters

Oul Carrowdore harbour
Became the baste’s larder
It ate aa the fish, then the boats
Wi yin sweep o its tail
It harpooned a whale
An gulped the whole thing doon its throat

Through Cardy tae Greba
Where it had a great feed o’
The monks that yinst leeved in the Abbey
He was fechtin a drouth
So he peeled back the roof
An drunk aa the monks’ wine an shandy

Roon bellied an happy
He munched through Greyabbey
Jaws drippin wi bluid, fat and slabbers
But the wee Orange Hall
Didnae taste orange ava
So he smashed the oul village tae clabbers

Efter that he went scootin
On up nearhaun Newtown
Still ragin’ wi’ hunger an anger
Then the Jurassic clart
Lot rip a big fart
An blew oot the wundaes in Bangor

Scrabo Tower like a bap
He ate in yin snap
Then bounded across tae the Cottown
Wi a smash an a tear
He ate a wheen mair
But then sput yin oot - it was rotten!

For every 5000 years
The land’s fill’t wi fear
Whun the monster clim's oot o the watter
That’s a lang time tae soak
So he eats thousands o fowk
Tae settle 5000 year hunger

The Ards fowk were aa ate
But the baste cudnae forget
That he wanted a monster for company
So feelin alane
Brave an far fae his hame
He thocht “A’ll go back whaur A come fae”

So this Lost Ness Monster
Said “Bye Bye” tae Ulster
An heedit himsel back tae Scotlan’
He drapped intae the sea
Near Donaghadee
An swum aff tae see Nessie, his cousin.


Colin Maxwell said...

Eat yer hairt oot, Rabbie Burns!


Stephen Jamison said...

This should be published in the Newtownards Chronicle!
Stephen J

Ulsterscot said...

Enough of the poetry and prose on the page!

Read this out on YouTube and link through to it.

Man or mouse??

Mark Thompson said...

Aw shucks - glad y'all like it! A YouTube video? Now that sounds like a challenge...!