Mushera’s Paddy Keeffe

I only knew Mushera’s Paddy Keeffe as a very old man
He was then in the twilight of his long life span
The physical wear of time on him did show
With a cane’s assistance he was walking slow

Ireland’s best two mile hurdler when in his life’s prime
Though this is going back many decades in time
Few in Ireland could match it with him on his day
The best of Mushera Valley of him one can say

In his prime Paddy Keeffe was a champion amongst athletic men
The All Ireland two mile hurdle champion of nineteen hundred and ten
A renowned athlete then well worthy of praise
By the Butter Road for him the bonfires did blaze

In hurdle racing in his time the supreme athlete
And though qualified to run in the Olympics he did not compete
For the honour of Britain and the flag of the crown
He felt that on so doing he would leave Ireland down

The legendary sporting hero of the valleys above Millstreet Town
Yet no memorial there to honour his renown
I knew him as an old man quite unaffected by fame
But time as is said the best of them does tame

From old timers i heard many stories of him as a boy
And the memories of such today i do enjoy
And i feel rather privileged that him i did meet
The champion from Mushera above the Town of Millstreet.

“Mushera’s Paddy O’Keeffe” is by Francis Duggan

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