The Magherafelt Gallery | Magherafelt Town, circa 1982-1986 | Magherafelt Poem

The Town of Magherafelt
by Robert Ritchie

I took a walk on Thursday morn
Up round the Market Square
And chatted with the stallholders
As they displayed their wares.
They were such a jolly lot
And told me they all felt,
There's not a better Market Place
Than the town of Magherafelt.

***

I dandered up past Willie Hugh's
And on past Mary's Bar;
John Mawhinney's grocery shop
Is a great big Spar.
The Barrack's now a super store
Where Bertie's welders smelt,
And Joyce has all the fashions
For the ladies of Magherafelt.

***

Christie's gone, but still the name
Appears across the way,
Where Pat still works the printing press
Seems, Bertie's there to stay.
Syd has left the hardware shop,
It's now a Carvarette,
Inside the Marble Arches
At the centre of Magherafelt.

***

I wandered past the Meeting House,
And stopped to quench my thirst,
Where Cornie's Airborne thoroughbred
In the Derby came in first.
It won a sweepstake fortune,
But half of it was dealt
To a prudent speculator,
In the town of Magherafelt.

***

The Council's left the Workhouse,
It's now away up the town,
Where the most important issues
Never get off the ground.
Greenvale Leisure Centre
Is now the modern cult,
With games of all descriptions
For the people of Magherafelt.

***

I turned and came back into town
And went up along the Pass;
The Picture House is still intact
Where once we wooed the lass.
Tom is gone but Sean is still there,
We've often heard it tell't,
The best ice cream in Ireland is
Agnews of Magherafelt.

***

There's changes now in Rainey Street,
The hotel is now just a block
Of offices for the Ministry men
From nine to five O'Clock.
As you go past the Market Yard
You'll be scundered if you smelt,
The cattle there for auction
In the town of Magherafelt.

***

I went on down to Charity Bridge,
To the ancient modern school,
Where Calvin flipped the dreaded cane
As we bent over the stool.
The victims they now span the globe,
Proud that their names are spelt,
In the eminent roll of the Rainey School,
At the bottom of Magherafelt.

***

Early students from near and far,
To get there had to hike;
Some came by train and jaunting car,
Lots of them came by bike.
When the old bike got a flat,
They were sure to get some help
From a well-known comic character,
Tommy Ritchie of Magherafelt.

***

The stories of this grand wee town
Would fill a great big book;
There's friendship and affection
Everywhere you look.
After seven years of memories
And the happiness I've felt;
I started the race and I'll finish it
In the town of Magherafelt.

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Date Taken: 13 April 2017 Number of Views: 1054


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