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My father couldna work, and my mother
couldna spin; The moon had climb'd the highest hill
I toiled day and nicht, but their bread I Which rises o'er the source of Dee,
couldna win; And from the eastern summit shed
Auld Rob maintain'd them baith, and, wi' Her silver lighé on tower and tree;
tears in his ee, When Mary laid her down to sleep,
Said, “ Jennie, for their sakes, Oh, marry Her thoughts on Sandy far at sea, When, soft and low, a voice was heard, Saying, “ Mary, weep no more for me!" My heart it said nay, for I look'd for Jamie
back; She from her pillow gently raised
But the wind it blew high, and the ship it Her head, to ask who there might be,
was a wreck ; And saw young Sandy shivering stand,
The ship it was a wreck-why didna Jamie With visage pale, and hollow ee.
dee? “O Mary dear, cold is my clay;
Or why do I live to say, Wae's me?
My father argued sair : my mother didna So, Mary, weep no more for me!
But she lookit in my face till my heart was Three stormy nights and stormy days
like to break; We toss'd upon the raging main ;
Sae they gied him my hand, though my heart And long we strove our bark to save,
was in the sea ; But all our striving was in vain.
And auld Robin Gray was gudeman to me. Even then, when horror chill'd my blood,
My heart was fill'd with love for thee : I hadna been a wife a week but only four, The storm is past, and I at rest;
When, sitting sae mournfully at the door, So, Mary, weep no more for me!
I saw my Jamie's wraith, for I couldna think
he, O maiden dear, thyself prepare ;
Till he said, “I'm come back for to marry We soon shall meet upon that shore,
thee." Where love is free from doubt and care,
And thou and I shall part no more!" Oh, sair did we greet, and muckle did we Loud crow'd the cock, the shadow fled,
say ; No more of Sandy could she see ;
We took but ae kiss, and we tore ourselves But soft the passing spirit said,
away : “Sweet Mary, weep no more for me!” I wish I were dead! but I'm no like to Alex. Ross.-Born 1698, Died 1784. And why do I live to say, Wae's me ?
I gang like a ghaist, and I carena to spin ;
But I'll do my best a gude wife to be, 1047-AULD ROBIN GRAY.
For auld Robin Gray is kind unto me. When the sheep are in the fauld, and the kye Lady Anne Barnard.-Born 1750, Died 1825.
at hame, And a' the warld to sleep are gane ; The waes o' my heart fa' in showers frae my
ee, When my gudeman lies sound by me.
1048.—THE FLOWERS OF THE Young Jamie loo'd me weel, and socht me for
FOREST. his bride; But saving a croun, he had naething else I've heard the lilting at our yowe-milking, beside;
Lasses a-lilting before the dawn of day; To mak that croun a pund, young Jamie gaed But now they are moaning on ilka green to sea;
loaningAnd the croun and the pund were baith for The Flowers of the Forest are a' wede me.
away. He hadna been awa a week but only twa, At buchts, in the morning, nae blythe lads When my mother she fell sick, and the cow are scorning, was stown awa;
The lasses are lonely, and dowie, and wae ; My father brak his arm, and young Jamie at Nae daffin', nae gabbin', but sighing and the sea,
. sabbing, And auld Robin Gray cam' a-courtin' me. Ilk ane lifts her leglen and hies her away.
In hairst, at the shearing, nae youths now are
jeering, The bandsters are lyart, and runkled, and
gray ; At fair, or at preaching, nae wooing, nae
fleechingThe Flowers of the Forest are a' wede
Oh, fickle Fortune,
Why this cruel sporting ? Oh, why still perplex us, poor sons of a day?
Nae mair your smiles can cheer me,
Nae mair your frowns can fear me ; For the Flowers of the Forest are a' Fede
away. Mrs. Cockburn.-Born 1679, Died 1749.
At e'en, at the gloaming, nae swankies are
roaming, 'Bout stacks wi' the lasses at bogle to
play ; But ilk ane sits drearie, lamenting her
dearieThe Flowers of the Forest are a' wede
Dule and wae for the order, sent our lads to
the Border ! The English, for ance, by guile wan the
day; The Flowers of the Forest, that foucht aye
the foremost, The prime o' our land, are cauld in the
clay. We hear nae mair lilting at our yowe.
milking, Women and bairns are heartless and wae; Sighing and moaning on ilka green loaningThe Flowers of the Forest are a' wede away.
Miss Jane Elliot.-About 1740.
1049.—THE FLOWERS OF THE
For what's been done before them?
To drop their Whigmegmorum.
The reel of Tullochgorum.
In conscience I abhor him.
And mak' a cheerfu' quorum.
The reel of Tullochgorum.
For half a hundred score o' 'em.
Wi' a' their variorums.
Compared wi' Tullochgorum.
Wi' keeping up decorum.
Like auld Philosophorum ?
At the reel of Tullochgorum ?
I've seen the smiling
Of Fortune beguiling; I've felt all its favours, and found its decay:
Sweet was its blessing,
Kind its caressing;
I've seen the forest
Adorned the foremost
Their scent the air perfuming !
I've seen the morning
With gold the hills adorning,
Shining in the sunny beams,
May choicest blessings still attend
And a' that's good watch o'er him! May peace and plenty be his lot, Peace and plenty, peace and plenty, May peace and plenty be his lot,
And dainties, a great store o' 'em ! May peace and plenty be his lot, Unstain'd by any vicious blot; And may he never want a groat,
That's fond of Tullochgorum.
But for the discontented fool,
And discontent devour him!
And nane say, Wae's me for 'im !
The reel of Tullochgorum!
Ye wha are fain to hae your name
To laurell'd wreath,
In guid braid claith.
Wi' a' this graith,
O'guid braid claith.
While he draws breath,
Wi' guid braid claith.
Gangs trigly, faith!
In guid braid claith.
Would be right laith, When pacin' wi' a gawsy air
In guid braid claith. If ony mettled stirrah green For favour frae a lady's een, He maunna care for bein' seen
Before he sheath
O' guid braid claith.
And scauld him baith:
Without braid claith. Braid claith lends fouk an unca heeze ; Maks mony kail-worms butterflees; Gies mony a doctor his degrees,
For little skaith : In short, you may be what you please,
Wi' guid braid claith.
My sheep I neglected, I broke my sheep
hook, And all the gay haunts of my youth I
forsook ; No more for Amynta fresh garlands I wove; For ambition, I said, would soon cure me of
love. Oh, what had my youth with ambition to
do ? Why left I Amynta? Why broke I my
vow? Oh, give me my sheep, and my sheep-hook
restore, And I'll wander from love and Amynta no
Through regions remote in vain do I rove,
love! Oh, fool! to imagine that aught could
subdue A love so well-founded, a passion so true !
Alas ! 'tis too late at thy fate to repine ;
Sir Gilbert Elliot.-- Died 1777.
For though ye had as wise a snont on,
I'll tak my aith,
O'guid braid claith.
1053.—THE FARMER’S INGLE. Whan gloamin grey out owre the welkin
keeks; Whan Batie ca's his owsen to the byre ; Whan Thrasher John, sair dung, his barn.
door steeks, An' lusty lasses at the dightin' tire ; What bangs fu' leal the e'enin's coming
cauld, An' gars snaw-tappit Winter freeze in
vain; Gars dowie mortals look baith blithe an'
bauld, Nor fley'd wi' a' the poortith o' the plain; Begin, my Muse! and chaunt in hamely
strain. Frae the big stack, weel winnow't on the hill,
Wi' divots theekit frae the weet an' drift; Sods, peats, and heathery turfs the chimley
fill, An' gar their thickening smeek salute the
lift. The gudeman, new come hame, is blithe to
find, Whan he out owre the hallan flings his een, That ilka turn is handled to his mind;
That a' his housie looks sae cosh an' clean; For cleanly house lo'es he, though e'er sae
Garr'd Scotish thristles bang the Roman
bays; For near our crest their heads they dought
na raise. The couthy cracks begin whan supper's owre;
The cheering bicker gars them glibly gash O'Simmer's showery blinks, an' Winter's
sour, Whase floods did erst their mailin's produce
hash. 'Bout kirk an' market eke their tales gae on; How Jock woo'd Jenny here to be his
bride; An' there, how Marion, for a bastard son,
Upo' the cutty-stool was forced to ride; The waefu' scauld o' our Mess John to
bide. The fient a cheep's amang the bairnies now;
For a' their anger's wi' their hunger gane : Ay maun the childer, wi' a fastin' mou,
Grumble an' greet, an' mak an unco maen. In rangles round, before the ingle's low, Frae gudame's mouth auld warld tales they
hear, O' warlocks loupin round the wirrikow : Oghaists, that win in glen an kirkyard
drear, Whilk touzles a' their tap, an' gars them
shake wi' fear! For weel she trows, that fiends an' fairies be
Sent frae the deil to fleetch us to our ill; That ky hae tint their milk wi' evil ee; An' corn been scowder'd on the glowin'
kiln. O mock nae this, my friends! but rather
mourn, Ye in life's brawest spring wi' reason clear ; Wi' eild our idle fancies a' return,
And dim our dolefu' days wi' bairnly fear; The mind's ay cradled whan the grave is
Weel kens the gudewife, that the pleughs
require A heartsome meltith, and refreshin' synd O' nappy liquor, owre a bleezin' fire :
Sair wark an' poortith downa weel be join'd. Wi' butter'd bannocks now the girdle reeks;
I’ the far nook the bowie briskly reams; The readied kail stands by the chimley cheeks, An' haud the riggin' het wi' welcome
streams, Whilk than the daintiest kitchen nicer
Frae this, lat gentler gabs a lesson lear:
Wad they to labouring lend an eident hand, They'd rax fell strang upo' the simplest fare,
Nor find their stamacks ever at a stand. Fu' hale an' healthy wad they pass the day ; At night, in calmest slumbers dose fu'
sound; Nor doctor need their weary life to spae, Nor drogs their noddle and their sense
confound, Till death slip sleely on, an' gie the hindmost
Yet Thrift, industrious, bides her latest days, Though Age her sair-dow'd front wi' runcles
wave; Yet frae the russet lap the spindle plays ; Her e'enin stent reels she as weel's the
lave. On some feast-day, the wee things baskit
braw, Shall heese her heart up wi' a silent joy, Fu' cadgie that her head was up an' saw
Her ain spun cleedin' on a darlin' oy; Careless though death shou'd mak the feast
her foy. In its auld lerroch yet the deas remains, Where the gudeman aft streeks him at his
ease ; A warm and canny lean for weary banes
O' labourers doylt upo' the wintry leas. Round him will baudrins an' the collie come,
To wag their tail, and cast a thankfu' ee. To him wha kindly flings them mony a crum
On sicken food has mony a donghty deed
By Caledonia's ancestors been done ; By this did mony a wight fu' weirlike bleed
In brulzies frae the dawn to set o' sun. Twas this that braced their gardies stiff an'
strang; That bent the deadly yew in ancient days; Laid Denmark's daring sons on yird alang ;
Oʻkebbuck whang'd, an' dainty fadge to
prie; This a' the boon they crave, an' a' the fee.
Frae him the lads their mornin' counsel tak : What stacks he wants to thrash; what
rigs to till; How big a birn maun lie on bassie's back,
For meal an' mu'ter to the thirlin' mill. Niest, the gudewife her hirelin' damsels bids Glowr through the byre, an' see the hawkies
bound; Tak tent, case Crummy tak her wonted tids, An' ca' the laiglen's treasure on the
ground; Whilk spills a kebbuck nice, or yellow
pound. Then a' the house for sleep begin to green,
Their joints to slack frae industry a while; The leaden god fa's heavy on their e'en, An' hafflins steeks them frae their daily
toil : The cruizy, too, can only blink and bleer;
The reistit ingle's done the maist it dow; Tacksman an' cottar eke to bed maun steer,
Upo' the cod to clear their drumly pow,
Till wauken'd by the dawnin's ruddy glow. Peace to the husbandman, an'a' his tribe, Whase care fells a' our wants frae year to
year! Lang may his sock and cou'ter turn the gleyb, An' banks o' corn bend down wi' laded
ear! May Scotia's simmers ay look gay 'an'green ; Her" yellow ha’rsts frae scowry blasts de
creed ! May a' her tenants sit fu' snug an' bien, Frae the hard grip o' ails, and poortith
freed; An' a lang lasting train of peacefu' hours
succeed ! Robert Fergusson.-Born 1751, Died 1774.
Your noisy tongue, there's nae abidin't;
It's sair to thole;
Wi' senseless knoll.
Nor should you think
Again to clink.
Were't no for thee,
To wauken me.
A cunnin' snare,
Ere they're aware.
Like it can wound,
For joyfu' sound.”
Sic honest fouk,
Thy dolefu' shock.
And then, I trow,
Has got his due."
1054.—TO THE TRON-KIRK BELL.
They ken themsel;
Waur sounds frae hell.
1055.-A SUNDAY IN EDINBURGH.
On Sunday, here, an alter'd scene O' men and manners meets our een. Ane wad maist trow, some people chose To change their faces wi' their clo'es, And fain wad gar ilk neibour think They thirst for guidness as for drink; But there's an unco dearth o' grace, That has nae mansion but the face, And never can obtain a part In benmost corner o' the heart. Why should religion mak us sad, If good frae virtue's to be had ? 51
Fleece-merchants may look bauld, I trow,
Thy sound to bang,
Wi' jarrin' twang.