Thursday, November 15, 2007


If you’re ever looking for an example of the grim humour of north of Ireland, there’s an old popular Belfast prod poem called The Ballad of William Bloat.

It’s a tale of a protestant man who slits his wife’s throat, and then – shortly afterwards – does away with himself.

There are a number of variations that arise, no doubt, from it’s propagation through the oral tradition.

Here are the top two results from my Google search for it. There are differences. The dénouement illustrates the confusion that loyalists had in the early 20th century: The Germans had wiped out almost the entire young northern working class in hours on the Somme. But – as the century moved on - the priest-ridden farmer state to the south replaced the Hun as the prime enemy.

No comments: