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A Memory From Nineteen Fifty Seven - Poem by Francis Duggan

When I was young long years ago ten years going on eleven
Cork were Munster football champs that year in nineteen fifty seven
And Toots Kelleher from Millstreet Town was in his prime and glory
One of Ireland's best forwards in his day and of him there's many story.

The All Ireland football final of that year is one I still remember
Cork played the wee County of Louth that sunday in September
Michael O Hehir on radio that marvellous commentator
For making games look truly great than him there was no greater.

O Hehir was at his usual best he made the game exciting
And around the radio that day the tension was nail biting
And each time that Cork broke through to score we gave vent
to ur feelings
Our shouts of joy and excitement re-echoed in the ceiling.

But Louth were one point to the fore when the ref blew the final whistle
And Jack Sullivan in angry mood his gray moustache did bristle
He said Cork have themselves to blame their shooting too erratic
And Louth fans in Croke Park and Louth at Cork's expense ecstatic.

Toots Kelleher did no harm that day to his great reputation
He kicked three marvellous points for Cork and lived up to expectation
But at the end it was Louth's day not that it should have mattered
But I recall how we felt then our hopes and dreams were shattered.

More than fifty years since then have gone but I can still remember
The day Louth won their first All Ireland on that sunday in September
And our great sense of disappointment when the ref blew the final whistle
And Jack Sullivan in angry mood his gray moustache did bristle.


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