The Horse Jumpin (at the Newton Flooer Show)

Author: W. G. Lyttle

Date: 1994

Source: Ullans: The Magazine for Ulster-Scots, Nummer 2 Spring 1994

From Robin’s Readings by W G Lyttle c.1890

There wuz the maist dreedful bit o’ crushin’ an’ husselin’ that ivir A cummed throo’ in my life gettin’ intil the place fur the horse jumpin’. We had till gang throo’ a gate, but heth they suin put the gate oot o’ that, fur a wheen fowk jist laid hoult o’ it an’ liftit it cleen aff its hinges. Peggy wud a been kilt if it hadnae been fur Mister Parr. She got wedged that ticht that she wuz liftit richt aff her feet. Mister Parr happened till be aside her, but she didnae ken him, the crater, an’ sez she till him, “Sur, deer, a wush ye wud help me.”

“A wull, mem,” sez he, lauchin’, an’ wi’ that he tuk his twa elbows an’ shoved the fowk richt an left till he got her till the gate. Weel, didn’t her skirts get gruppit sumwae in the gate, but Peggy wuz peggin’ on, an’ sez Mister Parr, sez he —

“Ye’ll teer yer dress mem.”

“Ah, let it teer awa,” sez she, “sae lang as A get in.”

Mister Tam Dugan, that leevs near the monument, had advised me till buy tickets fur the “big stan’,” an’ so A did, but whun Peggy saw it, A had sayrious bother gettin’ her up ontil it. She wuz feared that the wecht o’ us micht tummel the train ower on us, an’ if it hadnae been fur Mister Copeland an’ Mister Erturs that cum forrit an’ raisoned wi her, no a peg wud she a went. There wuz a wheen o’ fellows carried on aboot the gates an’ on the grun’ in a maist redeekilus fashin, an’ A wuz very neer gaun doon aff the big stan’ twa or three times an’ puttin’ a wheen o’ them oot by the neck. A saw Dokter Parke an’ twa or three ither gentilmen pittin’ fellows oot, an’ yin o’ them wuz that bothersum that naebuddy cud wark wi’ him but Mister Parr. A wuz thinkin’ o’ axin’ Major Hamilton till bring oot the mileeshy staff an’ pit them unner my cherge wi’ orders tae fire blank kertridges. Man, we wud suin a scattered them!

A met Mister Rabert Keghey, that used till be the Meer o’ Newton. Sez I, “Did ye hear that Rabin Byers wuz gaun till enter his meer, Jinney, fur the jumpin’?”

“A did heer it talkit aboot,” sez he, “but a’m feered Jinney wud suin cum till grief. Hooaniver,” sez he, “there’s a man ca’d Byers in fur the jumpin’, but A think it’s no Rabin.”

“Man,” sez I, “but A wud like tae see him an’ the meer gaun ower yon big shough.”

“Ay, it wud be a treet,” sez he. “Rabin wuz in wi’ me the tither day fur a pun’ o’ paint fur the shafts o’ his car, an’ A said A wuz feered he had haen Rabin Gordon on his car. He got cleen mad, an’ said he wudnae let sich a kerekter cum neer him fur that the last time ye wur in the Market Hoose ye said that muckle aboot him that he had till gang till the expense o’ gettin’ a bar o’ iron tae fassen on the back o’ his car.”

Weel, there wuz aboot a cupple o’ dizen horses, an twa darlin’ wee ponies went in fur the jumpin’, an’ it wuz a rael treet till see them. There wuz sum o’ them, an whun they cum till the dooble dyke they did egsakly what my auld meer din wi’ me, they jist stappit an’ lukit at it. Ithers o’ them went ower it in gran style, an’ thonner wuz Mister Davison’s horse happit ower iverythin’, jist as easy as oor dug jumps throo a hoop. There wuz yin horse that A think hadnae seen the dyke, fur it jist run ram stam up against it. My, the spirit of the man wuz ower ocht, fur when the horse strappit he jumpit cleen ower its heid, but bein’ ta’en at a short, he fell intil the water.

Puir crater, he wuz a’ dirtied. Peggy wuz terble vexed fur him, an’ she said she wuz gie an’ gled A wuznae amang them, fur she wuz shair A cud not a sut on auld Judey’s back. It wuz a’ ower at last, but it tuk the fowk a lang, lang time till cleer oot o’ the place. A waited till A seen the fireworks gaun up in the Square. My, but it wuz gran’ till see yon bleezin’ stars an’ things like comets fleein’ awa up till the very sky. A wuz stanin’ at yin o’ the places whaur the man wuz pitin’ them aff, an’ A micht a loast my life. He had aboot a dizin’ o’ them unner his erm, an’ they a’ went aff wi’ a crack like thunner, an’ ye wud a seen them happin, and jumpin’ a’ ower the square, an’ the fowk fleein’ in a’ direkshins.

Weel, my freens, a maun bid ye guid nicht, an’ may we a’ leev till see mony, an’ mony’s THE NEWTOWNERDS FLOWER SHOW.

• • • • •


There was a Presbyterian cat

Went huntin for its prey

An in God’s Hoose it kilt a moose

Upon the Sabbith Day

The folk they a’ wus horrified

Tae hear o sic a thing

The sexten birl’t it roon his heid

An oot its brains did ding.



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