Festival Customs

On St. Stephen’s night it is the custom for the boys of Skerries to go round the houses singing and collecting any money they can; When they come to the door they say:

“Here comes I that never came yet
Under my arm I carry my kit.
And in my hand a dripping pan
And think myself a jolly old man”.

“Here comes I Tom fool
With my bladder and staff.
I did not come here to make you cry
But I came here to make you laugh.
If you do not believe what I say.
Enter Prince George and clear the way.
“Here comes I little “divil” doubt
with a “chaw” of tobacco in my mouth.
Good for one good for two
What the “divil” more can I do”.

The “wran” the “wran” the king of all birds.
On St. Stephan’s day he was caught in the furze.
We dipped his wing in a barrel of beer.
A merry Christmas and a happy new Year.

Whatever money they collect they share among them.

Leo Derham, Cross Street (BNS, 1937-‘38)