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Published on Mar 25, 2008
Val Doonican sang this in 1967 ... a singer from Eire that took T.V. by storm in 1964 for twenty years ... dressed in his cardigan and sitting in his rocking chair. Rock on Val...
An Irish tale written by William Hargreaves about a donkey that refuses to budge in a race, but through a lot of persuading finally wins ... Whilst looking up on William Hargreaves I sourced that he had written a song called Burlington Bertie from Bow In 1915 ... which was popularly performed in the music halls of that time and later. I wonder if Delaney's Donkey was written back then? Look out for Paddy McGinty's Goat by Val Doonican ...
I have included the lyrics for the song out of interest DELANEY'S DONKEY (William Hargreaves) Val Doonican - 1967
Now Delaney had a donkey that everyone admired, Tempo'rily lazy and permanently tired A leg at ev'ry corner balancing his head, And a tail to let you know which end he wanted to be fed Riley slyly said "We've underrated it, why not train it?" Then he took a rag They rubbed it, scrubbed it, They oiled and embrocated it, Got it to the post And when the starter dropped his flag There was Riley pushing it, shoving it, shushing it Hogan, Logan and ev'ryone in town lined up Attacking it and shoving it and smacking it They might as well have tried to push the Town Hall down The donkey was eyeing them, Openly defying them Winking, blinking and twisting out of place Riley reversing it, Ev'rybody cursing it The day Delaney's donkey ran the half mile race.
The muscles of the mighty never known to flinch, They couldn't budge the donkey a quarter of an inch Delaney lay exhausted, hanging round its throat With a grip just like a Scotchman on a five pound note Starter, Carter, he lined up with the rest of 'em. When it saw them, it was willing then It raced up, braced up, ready for the best of 'em. They started off to cheer it but it changed its mind again There was Riley pushing it, shoving it and shushing it Hogan, Logan and Mary Ann Macgraw, She started poking it, grabbing it and choking it It kicked her in the bustle and it laughed "Hee Haw!" The Whigs, the conservatives, Radical superlatives Libr'rals and Tories, They hurried to the place Stood there in unity, Helping the community The day Delaney's donkey ran the half mile race.
The crowd began to cheer it. Then Rafferty, the judge He came to assist them, but still it wouldn't budge The jockey who was riding, little John MacGee, Was so thoroughly disgusted that he went to have his tea Hagan, Fagan was students of psychology, Swore they'd shift it with some dynamite They bought it, brought it, then without apology The donkey gave a sneeze and blew the darn stuff out of sight There was Riley pushing it, shoving it and shushing it Hogan, Logan and all the bally crew, Police, and auxiliary, The Garrison Artillery The Second Enniskillen's and the Life Guards too They seized it and harried it, They picked it up and carried it Cheered it, steered it to the winning place Then the Bookies drew aside, They all committed suicide Well, the day Delaney's donkey won the half mile race.