John Gillan 2 - Sligo Poets

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John Gillan Poems 2 - The Sligo Nationalist 1914

Sligo Nationalist 17 January 1914
           Municipal Elections
               (By John Gillan)

In the Town Hall on last Monday week
 Important business was got through,
Returning to the Corporation
 Members old and new.

There wasn’t much excitement,
 Not even one contest,
In any of the three Wards—
 North, East, or West.

No better man there could be got
 With such a fine re-cord,
Than Mr B.McTernan
 For the great North Ward.

Of course it’s right to give good men
 Places on their turns,
And no one could refuse a seat
 To Mr. Michael Burns.

Councillor Farrell, for the West Ward,
 A decent man is he;
He’s a man of brains and talent—
 Well fit for a T.C.

Than the Labour man in Lord Edward Street
 ’Twould be impossible really,
To find one to take his place—
 That’s Councillor Peter Kealey.

Workingmen of Sligo,
 Is there one who can
See that you get more justice
 Than John Lynch, the Alderman?

As smart a member could not be got—
 For his words shall always carry—
As the Trade and Labour Council’s choice,
 Mr. D. McSharry.

Now some officers of the Corporation
 Their worth I must here mark,
And the first gentleman I wish to praise
 Is Mr. McGoveran, the Town Clerk.

Mr. Shea, as Treasurer,
 A greater man you couldn’t find;
He is always cheerful, homely,
 So courteous and so kind.

If you’ve your yards and houses clean,
 Your pots, pans, and tables shinin’
There’s no nicer chap in the world today
 Than Town Sergeant “Dannie” Finan.

Let the bon-fires blaze next Friday night,
 And to your band go every player,
For this Home Rule Year we mean to have
 Alderman Jinks as our Mayor!


John Gillan celebrated the results of the 1914 Sligo Corporation elections which resulted in a labour majority on that body and he looked forward to the election of John Jinks as Mayor. Jinks, with the support of the labour members, did become mayor. for 1914 The previous mayor, Jink's political adversary Daniel O'Donnell, had been ill during the latter part of 1913 and died in early 1914. Gillan provided a suitable lengthy, detailed account of the funeral.

There were no contested elections for the vacancies on Sligo Corporation in January 1914. "The majority of newly elected members were put forward by the Trades Council and the local branch of the Transport Union so that the Council is now principally composed of Labour representatives", said the Sligo Champion. When Gillan deals with this he naturally gives prominence to the newly-elected Councillor Bernard McTernan, who was the owner of the Sligo Nationalist.

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  Sligo Nationalist 28 February 1914.
Lines on the Funeral of Ald. O’Donnell, Ex-Mayor.
               (By John Gillan)

Slowly came the funeral cortege,
   While the bands did softly play
The lonesome notes of the sorrowful “Dead March”
   To honour one who passed away.

Our Ex-Mayor is gone for ever,
   And his loss is mourned by all,
For during his two years of Office
   He was always found at duty’s call.

The large numbers of the vehicles,
   And the thousands on foot as well,
Silently moved in processional order
   While slowly tolled the sad dead bell.

No greater sight was seen in Sligo
   (Was said by not a few)
Since the burial of our M.P.–
   That brave man– P. A. McHugh.

The Corporation too attended
   Accompanied by our worthy Mayor,
And each member on his arm
   A badge of crepe did neatly wear.

Many priests of St. Mary’s also
   Did in the cortege join,
With our beloved Bishop of Elphin,
   The Most Rev. Dr. Coyne.

The monster concourse
   Spanned beyond a mile,
To see them march was most pathetic,
   The bands playing all the while.

Six A.O.H. Brothers
   The remains of this hero brave
Bore on their willing shoulders
   Through the streets on to the grave.

At the Cemetery they halted,
   And the music lowly played
Till the Brothers at the graveside
   The coffin gently laid.

The last prayers were then recited,
   As each one listened reverent-ly,
After which the hymn was rendered
   “Nearer My God to Thee.”

It’s hard to see from us taken
   A gentleman so fine,
For no more greater citizen
   Shall live in our time.

A great Catholic, staunch Nationalist,
   And Hibernian true was he.
Ah! what a pity he could not live
   To see his loved country Free!

He was respected by all people
   Of all classes and all creeds.
The hearse being covered over
   With numerous beautiful wreaths.

His memory should never fade
   For his kindness to the poor,
As never yet was one in need
   Turned from his door.

May the soul in Heaven rest!–
   Is my humble prayer-
Of Alderman Dan O’Donnell,
   Sligo’s brave Ex-Mayor.

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