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An' what poor cot-folk pit their painch in,
Trowth, Cæsar, whyles they're fash't enough ; A cottar howkin in a sheugh, Wi' dirty stanes biggin a dyke, Baring a quarry, and sic like, Himself, a wife, he thus sustains, A smytrie o' wee duddie weans, An' nought but his han' darg, to keep Them right and tight in thack an' rape.
An' when they meet wi' sair disasters,
But then to see how ye're negleckit,
I've notic'd, on our. Laird's court-day, An' mony a time my heart's been wae,
Poor tenant bodies, scant o' cash,
I see how folk live that hae riches ; But surely poor folk maun be wretches !
LUATH. They're nae sae wretched's ane wad think ; Tho' constantly on poortith's brink : They're sae accustom'd wis the sight, The view o't gies them little fright.
Then chance an' fortune are sae guided,
The clearest comfort o' their lives, Their grushie reans an' faithfu' wives; The prattling things are just their pride, That sweetens a' their fire-side.
An' whyles twalpennie worth o' nappy
Or tell what new taxation's comin
As bleak-fac'd Hallowmass returns,
That merry day the year begins,
Still it's owre true that
Haith, lad, ye little ken about it ; For Britair's guid !-guid faith, I doubt it! Say rather, gaun as Premiers lead him, An' saying aye or no's they bid him : At operas an' plays parading, Mortgaging, gambling, masquerading; Or may be, in a frolic daft, To Hague or Calais takes a waft, To make a tour, and tak a whirl, To learn bon ton an' see the worl'.
There, at Vienna' or Versailles, He rives his father's auld entails ! Or by Madrid he takes the rout, To thrum guitars, and fecht wi' nowt; Or down Italian vista startles, Wh-re-hunting among groves o' myrtles: Then bouses drumly German water, To mak himsel look fair and fatter, An' clear the consequential sorrows, Love-gifts of Carnival signoras. For Britain's guid!for her destruction? Wi' dissipation, feud, an' faction.
Hech man! dear sirs! is that the gate They waste sae mony a braw estate ! Are we sae foughten an' harass’d.
gear to gang that gate at last!
O would they stay aback frae courts,
tell me, Master Cæsar, Sure great folk's life's a life o' pleasure ! Nae cauld or hunger e'er can steer them, The vera thought o't need na fear them.
L-d, man, were ye but whyles whare I am, The gentles ye wad ne'er envy 'em.
It's true, they need na starve or sweat,