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A qua-fontis, what you please,

• He can content ye.

* Forbye some new, uncommon weapons, • Urinus Spiritus of eapons ; • Or Mite-horn shavings, filings, scrapings;

• Distillid

per se ; • Sal-alkali o' Midge-tail clippings,

• And mony mae.'

$ Waes me for Johnny Gec's Hole* now,' Quo' I, • If that the news be true! His braw calf-ward whare gowans grew,

• Sae white and bonnie, Nae doubt they'll rive it wi' the plew;

They'll ruin Johnie!

The creature grain'd an eldritch laugh, And says, Ye need na yoke the pleugh, * Kirk-yards will soon be till'd'eneugh,

• Tak ye

nae fear: • They'll a' be trench'd wi' mony a sheugl

• In twa-three year.

• Whare I killed ane a fair stráe death,

By loss o' blood or want of breath, * This night I'm free to tak my aith,

• That Hornbook's skill • Has clad a score i' their last claith,

• By drap an' pill.

The grave-digger.

An honest Wabster to his trade, • Whase wife's twa nieves were scarce weel bred, •Gat tippence-worth to mend her head,

When it was sair ; • The wife slade cannie to her bed,

But ne'er spak mair.

6

• A countra Laird had ta’en the batts,"

Or some curmurring in his guts, • His only son for Hornbook sets,

An' pays

him well. * The lad, for twa guid gimmer pets,

Was laird himsel.

• A bonnie lass, ye kend her name,

Some ill-brewn drink had hov'd her wame; • She trusts hersel, to hide the shame,

• In Hornbook's care ; Horn sent her aff to her lang hame,

• To hide it there.

That's just a swatch o' Hornbook's wayi. • Thus

goes he on from day to day, • Thus does he poison, kill, an' slay,

• An's weel paid for't; Yet stops me o' my

lawfu'

prey,
- Wi' his d-mn'd dirt

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But, hark! I'll tell

you

of a plot, • Tho' dinna ye be speaking o't; I'll nail the self-conceited sot,

As dead's a herrin

Niest time we meet, I'll wad a groat,

• He gets his fairin!

But just as he began to tell,
The auld kirk-hammer strak the bell
Some wee short hour ayont the twal,

Which rais'd us baith :
I took the way that pleas'd mysel,

And sae did Death.

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THE

BRIGS OF AYR:

A POEM.

INSCRIBED TO J. B*********, Esq., Ark.

The simple Bard, rough at the rustic plough, Learning his tuneful trade from ev'ry bough; The chanting linnet, or the mellow thrush, Hailing the setting sun, sweet, in the green thorn

bush; The soaring lark, the perching red-breast shrill, Or deep-ton'd plovers, grey, sild-histling o'er the

hill;

Shall he, nurst in the Pensant's lovly shed,
To hardy independence bravely bred,
By early poverty to hardship steel'd,
And train'd to arms in stern Misfortune's field.
Shall he be guilty of their hireling crimes,
The servile, mercenary Swiss of rhymes ?
Or labour hard the panegyric close,
With all the venal soul of dedicating Prose ?
No! though his artless strains he rudely sings,
And throws his hand uncouthly o'er the strings,
He glows with all the spirit of the Bard,
Fame, honest fame, his great, his dear reward,
Still, if some Patron's gen'rous care he trace,
Skill'd in the secret, to bestow with grace ;
When B********* befriends his humble name,
And hands the ristic stranger up to fame,

With heart-felt throes his grateful bosom swells, The godlike bliss, to give, alone excels.

'Twas when the stacks get on their winter-hap, And thack and rape secure the toil-won' crap i Potatoe-bings are snugged up fra skaith Of coming Winter's biting, frosty breath; The beės, rejoicing o'ér their summer toils, Unnumber'd buds an' flow'rs' delicious spoils Seald

up with frugal care in massive waxen piles, Are doom'd by man, that tyrant o'er the weak, The death o' devils smoor'd r. i' brimstone reek :The thundering guns are heard on ev'ry side, The wounded coveys, reeling, scatter wide ; The feather'd field-mates, bound by Nature's tie, Sires, mothers, children, in one carnage

lie: (What warm, poetic heart, but inly bleeds, And execrates man's savage, ruthless deeds!) Nae mair the flouv'r in field or meadow springs : Nae mair the grove with airy concert rings, Except perhaps the Robin's whistling glee, Proud o' the height o' some bit half-lang tree : The hoary morns precede the sunny days, Mild, calin, serene, wide spreads the noontide

blaze, While thick the gossamour waves wanton in the

rays. 'Twas in that season, when a simple bard, Unknown and poor, simplicity's reward, Ae night, within the ancient brugh of Ayr, By v him inspir'd, or haply prest wicare ;

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