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On flower and tree loud hums the bee ;
Up! lady fair, and braid thy hair,
Up! time will tell; the friar's bell
to the fields are gone;
There is a remarkable freedom in the diction and versification of the following beautiful song; the more remarkable that it is written for a Welsh air.
THE BLACK COCK.
Good morrow to thy sable beak,
A maid there is in yonder tower,
One fleeting moment of delight
This song is distinguished by the same delicious freedom, and was also written to music. Truly, the Muse can dance in fetters.
O welcome bat and owlet
Upon the soft wind floats her hair,
Her steps are in the whispered sound
I cannot resist indulging myself by transcribing the following Scottish ballad, a delightful specimen of quaint richness and quiet humour.
FY, LET US A' TO THE WEDDING.
(An Auld Song New Buskit.)
Fy, let us a' to the wedding,
For they will be lilting there;
The lass wi' the gowden hair.
And there will be jibing and jeering,
And glancing of bonny dark een,
O' questions baith pawky and keen.
And there will be Bessy, the beauty,
Wha raises her cockup sae hie,
Guid grant that she gang na’ ajee !
And there will be auld Geordie Tanner,
Wha coft a young wife wi' his gowd;
But, wow! he looks dowie and cow'd.
And brown Tibbie Fouler, the heiress,
Will perk at the tap o' the ha', Encircled wi' suitors, wha's care is
To catch up her gloves when they fa',
Repeat a' her jokes as they're cleckit,
And haver and glower in her face, While tocherless mays are negleckit,
A crying and scandalous case.
And Maysie, wha's clavering aunty
Wad match her wi’ Lowrie the laird, And learns the young fule to be vaunty,
But neither to spin nor to caird.
And Andrew, wha’s granny is yearning
To see him a clerical blade,
And cam' back a coof, as he gaed.
And there will be auld Widow Martin,
That ca’s herself thirty and twa; And thraw-gabbit Madge, wha for certain,
Was jilted by Hab o' the Shaw.
And Elspy, the sewster sae genty,
A pattern o’ havins and sense, Will straik on her mittens sae genty,
And crack wi' Mess John i’ the spence.
And Angus, the seer o' fairlies,
That sits on the stane at his door, And tells about bogles, and mair lies
Than tongue ever uttered before.
And there will be Bauldie, the boaster,
Sae ready wi' hands and wi' tongue; Proud Paty and silly Sam Foster,
Wha quarrel wi' auld and wi' young.
And Hugh, the town-writer, I'm thinking,
That trades in his lawyerly skill, Will egg on the fighting and drinking,
To bring after grist to his mill.
And Maggie-ha! ha! will be civil,
And let the wee bridie a-bee; Å vilipend tongue is the devil,
And ne'er was encouraged by me.
Then, fy, let us a' to the wedding,
For they will be lilting there, Frae mony a far-distant ha’ding,
The fun and the feasting to share.
For they will get sheep's-head and haggis,
And browst o' the barley-mow; E'en he that comes latest and lag is
May feast upon dainties enow.
Veal florentines in the oʻen baken,
Weel plenished wi' raisins and fat. Beef, mutton, and chuckies, a' taken
Het reeking frae spit or frae pat.
And glasses (I trow 'tis na' said ill),
To drink the young couple good luck, Weel fill'd wi' a braw beechen ladle,
Frae punch-bowl as big as Dumbuck.