When Irish eyes are smiling, sure ’tis like a morn in spring.
In the lilt of Irish laughter you can hear the angels sing,
When Irish hearts are happy all the world seems bright and gay,
And when Irish eyes are smiling, sure, they steal your heart away.
~Chauncey Olcott and George Graff, Jr. (lyrics), Ernest R. Ball (music)
Oh, did he have the Irish eyes—deep set and dark brown—they usually spoke before he ever uttered a word. Handsome and heartfelt in his convictions, my father proudly wore his Irish on his sleeve and encouraged us kids to do the same. His father was an Irish immigrant who came to the U.S. as a young man in his 30s. My dad, deeply influenced by his dad, would, after tipping back a beer or two or four, easily slip into an Irish brogue as though he too were from the old country. I still vividly recall a childhood, that when St. Patrick’s Day would roll around each year my siblings and I would go off to school wearing all the green we could handle, covered in pins that said things like “Kiss Me, I’m Irish” and other such sentiments. My mother, always amused, would jokingly remind us that we were French, too, but we didn’t seem to hear her in our frenzy to get out the door :-) This weekend as I celebrate an important part of my heritage I will have a beer or two or four and I will think of my dad and his Irish eyes—the finest I have ever seen.
Wishing you a wonderful weekend! Hope you find countless reasons to smile!