Friday, 3 July 2015

He Would Always Walk Tall!

The death was announced of Val Doonican, the Irish singer, who passed away yesterday at the age of 88. My parents really enjoyed listening to this gentle, humble man, whose charming voice brought laughter and smiles into many homes with his TV show [it ran from 1965 – 1986] We even had the LP! My Mum particularly loved his jumpers – and his rocking chair.

val doonican

I suppose my own two favourite songs were Walk Tall [I have tried,despite my diminutive stature] and Paddy McGinty’s Goat. But Mysterious People [and also The Special Years] were two that my Dad liked – celebrating the joys of childhood innocence.

Children are people who live in a land

Made of raindrops and puddles and pebbles and streams

Silently watching a twig as it sails

On a clear crystal pool to an island of dreams

There go a pair who have just built a city of mud,

And it's real

They know that mud doesn't look very pretty,

But ooh, how it feels!

This little boy greets the snow with a smile

That little girl has discovered an isle made out of pillows

One little fellow is friends with the wind in the willows

All of them children and all are mysterious people

I can remember when I was a boy

That my bed was a ship that I sailed through the night

And I remember the world as a place

That was eager and loving and shiny and bright

Where is the boy who was friends with the rainbow

And once rode a pawn?

Where is that shy and mysterious person?

Oh where have I gone?

I can remember I once said my prayers

But now I stand by while my children say theirs

Watching them kneeling

And I could cry

That one day they'll forget all that they're feeling

Oh, what a shame that our children should grow into people

I was never quite sure about Elusive Butterfly – the first time I heard it on the radio, it was a Mondegreen Moment – I thought “The bright elusive butterfly of love” was “The bride, a loose-leaf butterfly of love”!

RIP Val, thank you for all the melodies you shared – and in this day and age, a happy ‘showbiz’ marriage lasting over 50 years is something to be celebrated. May God comfort your widow Lynnette, your daughters and their families.


  1. He brought an immense amount of pleasure to all ages.

  2. RIP Val.
    I have no email for you but wanted to let you know that Badger is in the post today heading your way to The Manse. :D Betty

  3. Like you I have special of family around the TV
    with that air of fun about his show,

  4. Oh that song is so beautiful!!!!!!!!!!x


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