Ní Thosaímid An Tine – ten years on

Exactly ten years ago today I posted these lyrics on my blog at the time (they have had more incarnations than Doctor Who at this rate).
It was my first post to get any kind of widespread attention.  Yeah, I might be patting myself on the back but if I don’t who else will ha ha ha.
Anywho…it’s meant to be Irish history up to 2005 put to the tune of Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start The Fire” and it was nominated for Post of The Year at the inaugural Irish Blog Awards.  Didn’t scoop the gong but had a good night meeting fellow bloggers at a time when it was just getting off the ground as a medium on these shores. 
I’d love to have the time to add a few extra verses on the decade that has happened since, something that involves rhymes like “posterity” with “austerity”, etc.  Might be another ten years gone before I get to it though 😉
Druid Law, high kings, Cúchulainn, bronze things
Newgrange, Celts invade, Romans stay away


O’Neill dynasty, St Patrick, snakes flee
Monasteries, Book of Kells, Vikings from Norway


Waterford settlements, Dubh Linn battlements,
Clontarf, Brian Boru, everywhere another war


Many kingdoms come and go, tuatha rule, Strongbow
King Henry, Papal Bull, English army come ashore


Ní thosaímid an tine
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
Ní thosaímid an tine
No we didn’t light it
But we tried to fight it

Rule of Anglo Norman Lords, rise of Gaelic folklore,
Kilkenny Statutes, fortify the Pale

Reformation taking hold, Silken Thomas getting bold,
Poynings and Penal Laws, All rebellions fail

Catholicism stands its ground, will not to the king be bound
Cromwell, Will of Orange, Boyne battle, nation torn

Food exported, landlord greed, tenants they have mouths to feed
Wolfe Tone, not alone, Act of Union from the throne
Ní thosaímid an tine
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
Ní thosaímid an tine
No we didn’t light it
But we tried to fight it


Dan O’Connell wants repeal, not without the royal seal,
Spud blight, Great Famine, population fell


Irish language in decline, Georgian buldings to design,
IRB, Robert Emmet, Charles Stuart Parnell


Home Rule, Dublin slums, Ulster fears a day will come,
GAA, Land League, Fair, Free, Fixity


Great War, Inspiration, GPO proclamation
Long Fella, Big Fella, War over a Treaty


Ní thosaímid an tine
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
Ní thosaímid an tine
No we didn’t light it
But we tried to fight it


Free State, Fianna Fáil, Elections for the first Dáil
Resolution, Constitution, Neutrality


Pull out of the Commonwealth, Economy in poor health
Belfast, Sean Lemass, Behan-Joyce-O’Casey


James Craig, RUC, Gerrymander policy
Bloody Sunday, IRA, what else do I have to say


Ní thosaímid an tine
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
Ní thosaímid an tine
No we didn’t light it
But we tried to fight it


John Hume, EEC, Dr Garrett, RTE
CJ Haughey, H-block, Celtic Tiger, Geldof


U2, Boys In Green, D4-Culchie-Jackeen
X case, church and state, Good Friday mandate


Teflon Bertie, Eddie Hobbs, Immigrants do low-paid jobs
Millions wasted everywhere, Young and old in need of care


Can the Troubles be ignored, with Adams-Paisley to the fore
Does it mean an end to war? Cos I can’t take it anymore!


Ní thosaímid an tine
It was always burning
Since the world’s been turning
Ní thosaímid an tine
But when we are gone
Will it still burn on and on and on…


© B Joel 1989, JL Pagano 2005
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