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But mark the rustic, haggis-fed, The trembling earth resounds his tread, Clap in his walie nieve a blade, He'll mak it whissle; An' legs, an' arms, an' heads will sned, Like taps o' thrissle.
Ye powers, wha mak mankind your care, And dish them out their bill o' fare, Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware That jaups in luggies; But, if ye wish her gratefu' prayer, Gie her a haggis!
A DEDICATION TO GAVIN HAMILTON, ESQ.
EXPECT na, sir, in this narration,
To roose you up, an' ca' you guid,
This may do-maun do, sir, wi' them wha Maun please the great folk for a wamefou; For me! sae laigh I need na bow, For, Lord be thankit, I can plough; And when I downa yoke a naig, Then, Lord be thankit, I can beg; Sae I shall say, an' that's nae flatterin, It's just sic poet, an' sic patron.
The poet, some guid angel help him, Or else, I fear, some ill ane skelp him, He may do weel for a' he's done yet, But only he's no just begun yet.
The patron, (sir, ye maun forgie me, I winna lie, come what will o' me,) On every hand it will allow'd be, He's just-nae better than he should be.
I readily and freely grant,
He downa see a poor man want;
But then, na thanks to him for a' that; Nae godly symptom ye can ca' that; It's naething but a milder feature Of our poor, sinfu', corrupt nature! Ye'll get the best o' moral works "Mang black Gentoos and pagan Turks. Or hunters wild on Ponotaxi, Wha never heard of orthodoxy. That he's the poor man's friend in need, The gentleman in word and deed,
It's no through terror of d-mn-tion; It's just a carnal inclination.
Morality, thou deadly bane, Thy tens o' thousands thou hast slain! Vain is his hope, whose stay and trust is In moral mercy, truth, and justice!
No-stretch a point to catch a plack; Abuse a brother to his back; Steal through a winnock frae a wh-re, But point the rake that taks the door : Be to the poor like onie whunstane, And haud their noses to the grunstane, Ply every art o' legal thieving; No matter, stick to sound believing.
Learn three-mile prayers, and half-mile graces,
Wi' weel-spread looves, an' lang wry faces;
O ye wha leave the springs of C-lv-n, For gumlie dubs of your ain delvin! Ye sons of heresy and error,
Ye'll some day squeel in quaking terror!
Your pardon, sir, for this digression, I maist forgat my dedication; But when divinity comes cross me, My readers still are sure to lose me.
So, sir, ye see 'twas nae daft vapour, But I maturely thought it proper, When a' my work I did review, To dedicate them, sir, to you: Because (ye need na tak it ill) I thought them something like yoursel.
Then patronize them wi' your favour, And your petitioner shall everI had amaist said, ever pray, But that's a word I need na say: For prayin I hae little skill o't; I'm baith dead-sweer, an' wretched ill o't; But I'se repeat each poor man's prayer, That kens or hears about you, sir
"May ne'er misfortune's gowling bark Howl through the dwelling o' the clerk! May ne'er his generous, honest heart, For that same generous spirit smart! May K******'s far honour'd name Lang beet his hymeneal flame, Till H*******s, at least a dizen, Are frae their nuptial labours risen: Five bonnie lasses round their table, And seven braw fellows, stout an' able
To serve their king and country weel,
I will not wind a lang conclusion, Wi' complimentary effusion: But whilst your wishes and endeavours Are blest with fortune's smiles and favours, I am, dear sir, with zeal most fervent, Your much indebted, humble servant.
But if (which powers above prevent!) That iron-hearted carl, want, Attended in his grim advances By sad mistakes, and black mischances, While hopes, and joys, and pleasures fly him, Make you as poor a dog as I am, Your humble servant then no more; For who would humbly serve the poor? But by a poor man's hopes in heaven! While recollection's power is given, If, in the vale of humble life, The victim sad of fortune's strife, I, through the tender gushing tear, Should recognise my master dear, If friendless, low, we meet together, Then, sir, your hand-my friend and brother!
TO A LOUSE.
ON SEEING ONE ON A LADY'S BONNET AT CHURCH.
Owre gauze and lace;
Ye ugly, creepin, blastit wonner, Detested, shunn'd by saunt and sinner, How dare ye set your fit upon her, Sae fine a lady? Gae somewhere else, and seek your dinner, On some poor body.
Swith, in some beggar's haffet squattle; Where ye may creep, and sprawl, and sprattle Wi' ither kindred, jumpin cattle,
In shoals and nations; Whare horn or bane ne'er dare unsettle Your thick plantations. Now haud ye there, ye're out o' sight, Below the fatt'rils, snug an' tight; Na, faith ye yet! ye'll no be right Till ye've got on it, The vera tapmost, towering height O' miss's bonnet.
My sooth! right bauld ye set your nose out, As plump and gray as onie grozet; O for some rank, mercurial rozet, Or fell, red smeddum,
I'd gie you sic a hearty doze o't,
Wad dress your droddum!
I wad na been surprised to spy You on an auld wife's flainen toy; Or aiblins some bit duddie boy, On's wylie coat; But miss's fine Lunardi! fie, How dare ye do't?
O Jenny, dinna toss your head, An' set your beauties a' abread! Ye little ken what cursed speed The blastie's makin! Thae winks and finger-ends, I dread, Are notice takin!
O wad some power the giftie gie us, To see oursels as others see us! It wad frae monie a blunder free us And foolish notion; What airs in dress and gait wad lea'e us, And e'en devotion!
ADDRESS TO EDINBURGH. I.
EDINA! Scotia's darling seat!"
All hail thy palaces and towers, Where once beneath a monarch's feet Sat legislation's sovereign powers! From marking wildly-scatter'd flowers, As on the banks of Ayr I stray'd, And singing, lone, the lingering hours, I shelter in thy honour'd shade.
Here wealth still swells the golden tide,
Bids elegance and splendour rise; Here justice, from her native skies,
High wields her balance and her rod; There learning, with his eagle eyes, Seeks science in her coy abode.
With open arms the stranger hail; Their views enlarged, their liberal mind, Above the narrow, rural vale; Attentive still to sorrow's wail,
Or modest merit's silent claim; And never may their sources fail! And never envy blot their name!
Thy daughters bright thy walks adorn!
Dear as the raptured thrill of joy! Fair B strikes th' adoring eye, Heaven's beauties on my fancy shine; I see the sire of love on high,
And own his work indeed divine!
V. There, watching high the least alarms, Thy rough, rude fortress gleams afar;