Big thank you from

A story of Belfast past

Belfast is an Ulster man with features dour and grim
A pint of creamy porter and a Sunday morning hymn
A grimy little cafe were they serve you dainty teas,
Fish & chips in paper with vinegar & peas,
A banner on July the 12th a sticky toffee apple
A righteous little gospel hall, a Roman Catholic chapel
A Tele boy with dirty face a piece of apple tart
A fry upon a Saturday, a coal breek on a cart.

A corporation gas man complete with bowler hat
A wee shop at the corner, a friendly bit of chat,
An oul lad in a duncher cap a woman in a shawl,
A pinch of snuff, a tatie farl, a loyal orange hall
A tobacco smell in York Street, a beg of yellow man
An Easter egg thats dyed with whin, a slice of Ormo pan
A youngster with some sticklebacks inside an oul glass jar,
A meeting at the Customs House or an old Victorian bar.

Its mud banks on the Lagan when the tide is running low
A man collecting refuse, bonefires in Sandy Row,
A bag of salty dulse a bowl of Irish stew,
A goldfish bought in Gresham street, a preacher at a queue,
A portrait of King Billy upon a gable wall,
A flower seller on a stool outside the City Hall,
A half moon round a doorstep a pollis man on guard
A man whos crying delf for rags, a little whitewashed yard.

A market on a Friday, the ships lined at the docks,
A shiny polished fender a bunch of green shamrocks,
Herrings fried in oatenmeal a drink of buttermilk
A snowy linen handkerchief as soft as finest silk
A bap with country butter, a dander around the Zoo
A climb up tough Ben Madigan to get a splendid view
A bunch of savoury scallions a plate of buttery champ
Hopscotch on the footpath, a swing around a lamp.
I remember on the cobblestones of our wee narrow street ,
The cart would come along and the sound , a special creak ,
The aul man bend over,, pulling it and shouting "COALBREEK"
Those were the days sweet so sweet.

Delph dogs upon the mantelpiece, a wee man from the Pru
A chimney sweep on bicycle ,coming to do the flue,
The ever present vista of the hills of Castlereagh
The deathless hush on Saturday when Linfield play away,
Its by killarneys lakes and fells, on the bells of the Assembly Hall
Spikey broken bottles on a backyard wall
Beans boiled with pamphery served when piping hot,
With Comber spuds like balls of flour, cracked, laughing in the pot
The smell of mansion polish on the lino in the hall,
A Sunday school excursion, a treat for one and all
The Island men who built great ships to take us far to sea
S.D Bells in Ann Street, where they sold the finest tea.

Friends home from America theyv'e been thinking long,
A Salvation band on Sunday to save the sinnin throng
A wee walk up the Lisburn Road and back by the Malone
The Albert clock in High Street, with its rich and mellow tone
Its Barney Hughes hot cross buns, a canary in a cage
An old man talking in the Park of a past and better age,
The sharp expressive dialect of everyone at large
A ton of coal on the Lagan afloating on a barge
Women on the windy stool when the summer sun shines down
A wedge of apple tart or a wee race intay town
A needle to an anchor in Smithfield famous Mart
Ach friends I'd better call a halt, afore I break my heart.