The Ballad o' Wully John

Now here's the yarn 'bout Wully John,
Too fat to put his trowsers on,
But squeeze he would intae his car,
An' heed doon to the village bar.

Wully John was such a gype,
He couped the motor every night,
Couldn'ae seem tae take the bends,
An' a'ways in the seough he ends.

The ither day he was gaein' hame,
With the missus and the we'un,
Ye'd think with them he'd have m're sense,
But no, this mon was really dense.

It might be the path he takes,
Or the fact he has no brakes,
But up onto tae wheels he went,
An' first he got the bumper bent.

Then they couped right o're on top,
An deep into the seogh they'd drop,
Lucky there's no damage done,
Tae the poor wee we'un or it's mum.

But Wully John was nae so lucky,
He climbed out so very mucky,
Frim heed tae toe he was wringin' wet,
An' hardly could mear scunnered get.

Wully John's we'un was bright,
He knew his daddy was a gype,
If yer wunnerin how he'd know,
Because his Ma had told him so.

"Hey Da, ye shouldn'ae drive so fast,
An that trector not have passed,
If ye wern'ae always such a hog,
We wouldn'ae be sleachin' in this bog."

"Hauld yer whish, ye cheeky runt,
I hae te say ye have a front,
Ye'r herdly stannin' on yer legs,
An learnin' yer granny to suck eggs."

"I'll skite ye round the ear!", he said.
"An' skelp your erse until it's red."
"Uch, Wully John, lay aff the kid,"
"He didn'ae coupe the car, you did!"

No matter h'mony time he rolled,
Wully John could no' be told.
He knew better n'er the rest,
But very soon would come the test.

One frosty night t'was ga'en hame,
Lucky tae have missed the rain.
The road was lik' a skatin' rink
An Wully John, the worse fer drink

His car, it wasna'e any guid,
I only cost him thirty quid,
An even though he had nae brakes,
A shertcut through the forest takes.

There is nae road there, just a track,
But Wully John just must get back.
Though the windscreen, can'ae see,
But's he's bursting fit to pee.

Then there comes that fateful bend,
That mony times might be his end.
The tree thet stepped in front he blames,
His car it ended up in flames.

This time he wasn'ae in the muck,
Inside the car was firmly stuck.
There are some folk would blame the bend,
But, t'was beer and bacon brought his end.

Wully's car was burning bright,
In the forest, in the night.
What immortal hand ner eye,
Could match his crass stupidity.

Joe Gillespie - July 2010

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Joe Gillespie
Joe Gillespie

Joe has enjoyed writing ever since his schooldays however, this poem is fairy recent. Before everyone had televisions and their own cars, this Ulster-Scots dialect was commonplace in and around Larne. People tended to stay in the area in which they were born.