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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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CURSE OF DONERAILE

ALAS HOW DISMAL IS MY TALE;
I LOST MY WATCH IN DONERAILE.
MY DUBLIN WATCH, MY CHAIN AND SEAL
PILFERED AT ONCE IN DONERAILE.
MAY FIRE AND BRIMSTONE NEVER FAIL
TO FALL IN SHOWERS IN DONERAILE.
THE FATE OF POMPEY AT PHORSALE
BE THAT CURSE OF DONERAILE.
MAY EGYPT'S PLAGUE AT ONCE PREVAIL
TO THIN THE KNAVES OF DONERAILE.
MAY EVERY POST, GAZETTE, AND MAIL
SAD TIDINGS BRING OF DONERAILE.
MAY FROST AND SNOW AND SLEET AND HAIL
BENUMB EACH JOINT IN DONERAILE.
MAY WOLVES AND BLOODHOUNDS TRACE AND TRAIL
THE CURSED CREW OF DONERAILE.
MAY EVERY MISCHIEF FRESH AND STALE
ABIDE HENCEFORTH IN DONERAILE
MAY NEITHER FLOUR NOR OATENMEAL
BE FOUND OR KNOWN IN DONERAILE.
MAY CURSES WHOLESALE AND RETAIL
POUR WITH FULL FORCE ON DONERAILE.
MAY EVERY TRANSPORT WONT TO SAIL
A CONVICT BRING FROM DONERAILE.
MAY COLD AND HUNGER STILL CONGEAL
THE STAGNANT BLOOD OF DONERAILE.
MAY CHARON'S BOAT TRIUMPHANT SAIL
COMPLETELY MANNED FROM DONERAILE.
AND MAY GRIM PLUTO'S INNER JAIL
FOREVER GROAN WITH DONERAIL.

Submitter comment:

IT IS A GREAT CURSING BALLAD; WRITTEN IN THE YEAR 1808, IT IS AS
POPULAR TODAY AS IT WAS THEN. IN DONERAILE AT THE TIME, LIVED
A GALWAY SCHOOLMASTER, PAT O'KELLY, WHO FANCIED HIMSELF A BIT OF
A POET. ONE DAY HE LOST HIS WATCH IN THE LOVELY NORTH CORK
VILLAGE AND WAS NEVER RETURNED. HE IMMEDIATELY SAT DOWN AND WROTE
THIS BALLAD. FAR TOO LONG TO GIVE IN FULL, HERE ARE A FEW COUPLETS.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT ; DETROIT ; UNION

Keyword(s): CURSE ; IRELAND ; OVERREACTION

Subject headings: Favorites
Ballad Song Dance Game Music Verse -- Hate
BELIEF -- Curse

Date learned: 11-26-1972

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