Och, the world was full of grieving, and when I’d had enough
I packed me bag and set me face towards Ballymackleduff
White houses nestle there, all far from toil and trouble
Ah, the loch and the sea birds and sweet Derryfubble
I thought me heart would melt for joy and nothing might disturb
The peace that I’d be finding in beautiful Benburb

Oh the friends of my youth were there to make my coming merry
First I drank with Mick the Tanner just a mile from Fubblederry
And Roaring Pat was waiting in the bar at Mackleben
‘Begod’ says he, ‘have one with me’, three jolly Irish men
With all the pints of porter, the gossip and the cackle
‘Twas dancing in the road we was that goes to Derrymackle

Then up spoke Mick the Tanner that was born in Fubblemack
The boys at Ballyfubble will be glad to see ye back
Let’s be going to O’Reilly’s where the fiddler of Benbally
And the Fubblederry Fluter is in his Dancing Palace
And the girls from Ferrymackle and from Bubblefurbyduff
Is doing all the jigging and the rockin’ rollin’ stuff

Ah, hadn’t we the time at all at Glubbymacklederry
With all the folk from Grabble and-from Ballygubbleferry
And Mackledubblegurgle; and Blubberderryglen
And the lasses from Duffmackle and the ranting Burble men
The Squinting Men from Brackle and Mrs Tom MacNally
And the seven black-haired sisters that live over in Duffbally

And wilder came the music from the Fubblederry Flute
And Mick was drinking Guinness from the Widow Leary’s boot
And Roaring Pat was fighting with a man from Derryburble
That laid him out and wrote a sign that said ‘DO NOT DISTURBLE’

Oh shut were all the factories and open all the bars
There was laughter in the lamplight and kissing by the stars
Delight in Derryfubble and Benburb was full of song
Ah, Ballymackleduff , why did I stay away so long?


This is a skit by Paul Jennings on Ulster place names Ballymackleduff, Derryfubble and Benburb. It was first published in The Observer on July 26, 1959.

According to the web site Tyrone Tribulations, Derryfubble is a sort of a townland ‘but not quite’. It comes from the Irish Doire Fubble which suggests a family by the name of Fubble from Derry were evicted from their home, probably in the 1800s for rustling or in-breeding, and settled in a field on the outskirts of the more bustling Benburb. The only remaining Fubble in the phone-book resides in Limavady but ‘he refused to answer our questions and threatened to shoot us if we mentioned that place again, his face twitching a lot’.

Song Clip