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I'm sure sma's pleasure it can gie,
To skelpi an' scaud poor dogs like me,
Great is thy pow'r, an' great thy fame;
An' faith! thou's neither lag nor lame,
Whyles ranging like a roaring lion
Whyles in the human bosom pryin',
I've heard my reverend graunie say,
Ye fright the nightly wand'rer's way
When twilight did my graunie summon,
Or, rustlin', thro' the boortries" comin',
Aew dreary, windy, winter night,
The stars shot down wi' sklentin's light;
Small. h Give. i Strike, or beat. k Known.
Flaming pit. m Bashful.
• Sometimes. p Uncovering.
r Wise, good. s Beyond.
n Apt to be scared. Frightful hollow moan. Frighted, or frightful.
Wi' you, mysel, I gat a fright,
Ye, like a rash-bush, stood in sight,
The cudgel in my nieveb did shake,
Awa' ye squatter'd like a drake,
On whistling wings.
Let warlocks grim, an' wither'd hags,
And in kirk-yards renew their leagues
Thence countra wives wi' toil an' pain,
An' dawtit, twal-pintk Hawkie's' gaenm
Thence mystic knots mak great abuse,
y A pool, or sheet of water. z A bush, or large tuft of rushes a Rushing noise of wind or water.
c The raising a cloud of dust.
b Hand, or fist. d Fluttered in water. e Wizards. f Ragwort. g Digged up, or disinterred. Those who are, or were, believers in the old traditions relative to witchcraft, supposed that the incantations of these demoniacs were frequently performed over dead bodies, which they dug, scratched, or conjured out of their graves in order to perform their devilish orgies more effectually. h Churn. i Fondled, caressed. k Twelve-pint. n Barren.
o Bull. The literal English meaning of these last two lines is, that a favourite cow, that gave daily twelve Scotch pints of milk (equal to forty-eight English pints), is become as barren as a bull, in consequence of witchcraft.
Men newly married.
When the best wark-lumer i' the house,
Is instant made no worth a louse,
When thowest dissolve the snawy hoord,
An' 'nighted trav❜llers are allur'd
An' aft your moss-traversing Spunkies,
Till in some miry slough he sunk is,
When Masons' mystic word an' grip
The youngest brother ye wad whip
Lang syne in Eden's bonnie yard,
Sweet on the fragrant, flow'ry swaird,
r A working tool.-Fully to appreciate the meaning of the stanza beginning Thence mystic knots,' it is necessary for the English reader to know, that a tradition was entertained in Scotland of the power of witchcraft to prevent consummation on the bridal night, by rendering the young guid man. powerless just at the bit,' or moment when, &c.
s A charm or spell.
u A mischievous kind of spirits, said to haunt fords, or ferries, particularly in stormy nights.
w Will-o'-the-wisp, or Jaek-a-lantern.
Then you, ye auld, snick-drawing dog!
An' play'd on man a cursed brogue,
An' gied the infant warld a shog,y
'Maist ruin'd a'.
D'ye mind that day, when in a bizz,3
An' sklented on the man of Uz
An' how ye gat him i' your thrall,
An lows'de his ill-tongu'd wicked scawl,'
But a' your doings to rehearse,
Your wily snares an' fechtings fierce,
Wad ding' a' Lallan tongue, or Erse,
An' now, auld Cloots, I ken ye 're thinkin',
But, faith! he'll turn a corner jinkin','
But fare you weel, auld Nickie-ben!
O wad ye tak a thought an' men'!
e Loosed. A scold
y A violent shock. z Bustle. b Withered, or scorched wig. d Hit aslant, or obliquely. g Fighting. h Vide Milton, book vi Tripping. 1 Dodging.
Ye aiblins might-I dinna ken"
I'm wae to think upon yon den,
ADDRESS TO EDINBURGH.
EDINA! Scotia's darling seat!
Bids elegance and splendour rise;
With open arms the stranger hail;
Or modest merit's silent claim;
n Do not know.
• Written in the winter of 1784-5. The idea of an Address to the Deil was suggested to the poet, by running over in his mind the many ludicrous accounts and representatious we have, from various quarters, of this august personage.'-Gilbert Burns.