Fiction writing/Wicklow Games

The Wicklow Games

Not yet (in the early 21st century) as well known as the Olympic Games or as popular as the World Cup, the fame of and interest in The Wicklow Games has sky-rocketed not least due to the incredible popularity of some of the wonderful poetry that has been written to commemorate The First Wicklow Games where a vast throng of Flynns and assorted in-laws and friends met in fierce but (relatively) fair competition.

The Wicklow gamesEdit

Bodies tired by travel
From our far-off foreign lands
We did not see the cunning trap
That filled our helpless glands
With substance that would slow us down
In moments critical
We thought that “have another” was 
Addressed by some good pal

So we arrived in Wicklow 
In good faith and in good cheer
Seeing no conspiracy 
In faces warm and dear
We were not disappointed (much)
When robbed of the sack race
We overlooked deceptions
With a certain stoic grace

The egg and spoon went fair and square
Until I was knocked down
“Accidentally of course” 
Said culprit with a frown
The welly that I threw flew far
And certain first place gained
The (Wicklow) ref then changed the rules
“UNDER the rope” explained

But we persisted knowing that
Each dog must have its day
That muscles trained by German toil
Would surely reward pay
We pulled that rope and
Efforts moved the watchers to much grief
But not an inch could we move that
Stud-booted Wicklow beef

I’m not quite sure what trick was used
In the wheelbarrow race
But I know that we won my leg 
With elegance and grace
But somehow we were led astray
Off into bumpy ground
So was it really fair and square?
We lost the second round 

And all the time our “friendly” hosts
Would smile and say “more drink”
And being polite we’d accept.
Result! What do you think?
They piled the prizes up but still
I will say all in all
Although we did not win a prize
The crack was had by all

Although we did not win a prize 
We do not bear a grudge
Although some others (rightly??) claim
That “certain people” fudged 
So that they could have their day
Their moment in the light
The scholars in a thousand years
Will read and know what’s right 
                                           - Lorcan 


The young man had fought well. That day
He strutted like a king. 
He felt (as feel a fighter must)
“I can beat anything
Or anybody in the field
This log is mine – I’ll never yield.”

He’d started off with Canada
A Rocky Mountain son
Had travelled far to proved his strength
Could better anyone.

Though he’d fought well and sought the crown
The maple leaf had fallen down

Then one by one the Southside’s best
Had come to knock him off
Great Colm of the balding head
Had said, “I’ll get this toff”

But he had fallen like the rest 
Thought all agreed he’d done his best

When Darren of the mighty girth
And foreign fighting skill
Had superciliously grinned
His pride was quickly killed

He tumbled to the Wicklow earth
Gazed upward at the great Fionn’s mirth.

When Pol og danced his boxer’s dance
Aburst with Tallagh pride
He went tumbling off the log.
But, at least he tried!

And then he stood to watch and see
How he could gain a victory.

Will he ere tire we wondered
As another hero fell?
Is Fionn the name that history
Of this event will tell?

“No I am German – full of might
And I will win this very night.”

And watchers gasped as this huge man
From Northern Europe’s fog
Strode up to Fionn to challenge 
For possession of The Log

“I am The Maren’s brother:” 
He cried out in a loud voice
“And victory’s a must for me
It’s simply not a choice.”

A judge of men and warriors 
He was in his own land
He grasped the jousting weapon.
It looked small in his huge hand.

He glared at Fionn and others
Would have trembled at that gaze
But Fionn just raised his weapon
And he smiled - to our amaze

Fionn did not boast as others might
He simply smiled and said: “Let’s fight.”

The moments of the duel were short
But its effect is long
For it will be remembered 
In all future fighter’s song

The mighty Teuton lost the test
He tasted Wicklow grass. Was best!

Loud were the cheers. They echoed
All around the Wicklow dell.
A hunting hawk looked, hurried home
With a new tale to tell

A badger watching from his run
Could not recall such a great one.

But then a voice spoke up.
Some people laughed. All were surprised.
The poet said I will now fight
This night beneath these skies

And words will not my weapon be
I will fight fair and win. You’ll see.

And yes this mild and modest man
Defeated mighty Fionn
And thus defeated Wicklow’s pride
Defeated everyone.

“But please, do not talk of this night!”
He said. “Twas just a pillow fight.”
                                                - Lorcan