On Boycotting the Sean Mac Eoin Statue Unveiling

Enda Kenny in Ballinalee at the Sean Mac Eoin staue unveiling
Enda Kenny in Ballinalee at the Sean Mac Eoin statue unveiling

I thought of it, attending…
The unveiling, the Taoiseachs speech,
About a hero we have in common,
Who across the divide does reach.
He fought the war, he made a choice,
Though my folks did not think his choice right,
Having fought the war he had the right to choose,
So against him and his we did not fight.

Of few in the country truly neutral,
Though Republican was our hue,
We had not turned on an Empire finally working
As a country is meant to do,
For the sake of a measly Free State
Who’s head of state was still the King,
For so little they settled after such a fight…
To accept what was given, next to nothing!

“Freedom to achieve Freedom”
Said Michael Collins, who other folk hold as great…
“An honourable agreement with an honourable enemy”
Spoke Mac Eoin at Ballinalee chapel gate.
But enhanced home rule for which Redmond campaigned
It was all for their fighting they had got…
Hatred fanned between Gael and Gall
The best of our people shot.

And as for today!!! Those who commemorate
Do they think that he had planned
To replace landlords with banking corporations
Who would lay claim to the land?
Ruthless, like the landlords before them,
When things dont go their way anymore
The contract is what they hold important,
And the Irishman gets the door!!!

The state in the sstem complicit
Think how much this is so –
Who who fight for householders rights
So the people to the road the banks cant throw…
Its NOT the parties of the centre and right
Officially the parties of the people of the land…
No, its the Maxists of the Left
Who for the peoples rights to their homes stand!

At a time when entrenched the people are,
To exploit their own the government wont relax,
To punish folk brave enough to buy a home…
The cheek of him… his home let us tax!
Croppies so bold, that wont lie down,
We had property rates before…
Tax their homes through Revenue to subdue them
Or we’ll put them to the road once more!!!

I will in my time make my way
To where that statue does stand…
To honour a hero, as he was, though flawed,
Who fought to free our land…
Ill pray too for Mc Inertney and the McEvaddys
And for Andrew McKeowns sould sake…
And for my own, that if ever faced with options* such…
Such choices I wont make…

*Options – we have a family story of two families, Mc Evaddys and McIntertenys… one of whom was a sentry shot at his post in Custume Barracks in Athlone by Sean Mac Eoin for falling asleep on duty. A raw recruit, untrained he knew nothing of being a soldier, and the story is told with bitterness by Athlone locals to this day. The other story is of a family displaced from the house that the forge used to be before the Mac Eoin’s / McKeowns moved to Ballinalee from Bunlahy, at the point of a pitchfork according to the story told by my late father, who had taken the tenancy after the death of their father. Their mother had died some years previus. They got shelter with my great grandfather, who after sheltered McKeon when a boycott of him in revenge was organised in the village.

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