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On the lofty ether borne,
Man with all his pow'rs you sco. n;
Swiftly seek on clanging wings,
Other lakes and other springs;
And the foe you cannot brave,
Scorn at least to be his slave.


Written January 25, 1793, the Birth-day of the Author,
On hearing a Thrush in a Morning Walk,

SING on, sweet thrush, upon the leafless bough;
Sing on, sweet bird, I listen to thy strain;
See aged Winter, 'mid his surly reign,
At thy blythe carol clears his furrow'd brow :
So in lone Poverty's dominion drear,

Sits meek Content with light, unanxious heart, Welcomes the rapid moments, bids them part, Nor asks if they bring aught to hope or fear. I thank thee, Author of this op'ning day! [skies! Thou whose bright sun now gilds yon orient Riches denied, thy boon was purer joys, What wealth could never give nor take away! Yet come, thou child of Poverty and Care; The mite high Heav'n bestow'd, that mite with thee I'll share.


On seeing a wounded Hare limp by me, which a fellow
had just shot at.

INHUMAN man! curse on thy barb'rous art,
And blasted be thy murder-aiming eye:
May never Pity sooth thee with a sigh,
Nor ever Pleasure glad thy cruel heart!
Go, live, poor wand'rer of the wood and field,
The bitter little that of life remains :

No more the thick'ning brakes and verdant plains To thee shall home, or food, or pastime yield.

Seek, mangled wretch, some place of wonted rest-
No more of rest, but now thy dying bed!
The shelt'ring rushes whistling o'er thy head,
The cold earth with thy bloody bosom prest.
Oft as by winding Nith I, musing, wait

The sober eve, or hail the cheerful dawn,
I'll miss thee sporting o'er the dewy lawn,
And curse the ruffian's aim, and mourn thy hapless



New-Year Morning Salutation to his Auld Mare Maggie,
On giving her the accustomed Ripp of Corn to Hansel
in the New Year.

A GUID new year, I wish thee, Maggie!
Hae there's a rippa to thy auld baggie ;r
Tho' thou 's howe-backit, now, an' knaggie,'
I've seen the day

Thou could hae gaen like onie staggie"
Out-owre the lay.

Tho' now thou 's dowie, stiff, an' crazy,
An' thy auld hide 's as white 's a daisy,
I've seen thee dappl'd, sleek, and glaizie,*
A bonnie gray :

He should been tight that daur't to raise thee,
Ance in a day.

Thou ance was i' the foremost rank,
A filly, buirdly, steeve,a an' swank,b
An' set weel down a shapely shank,
As e'er tread yird;c

An' could hae flown out-owre a stank,d
Like onie bird.

q A handful of unthreshed corn.

Sunk in the back.

"Diminutive of stag.

r Belly.

Like knaggs, or points of rocks. w Worn with fatigue.

x Smooth like glass. y To inflame, or madden.

z Stout made.

c Earth.

a Firm, compacted.


d A pool of standing water.

It's now some nine-an'-twenty year,
Sin' thou was my guid-father's meere ;
He gied me thee, o' tochere clear,
An' fifty mark;

Tho' it was sma', 'twas weel won gear,
An' thou was stark.

When first I gaed to woo my Jenny,
Ye then was trottin' wi' your minnie :8
Tho' ye was trickie, slee, an' funnie,
Ye ne'er was donsie ;h
But hamely, tawie, quiet, an' cannie,
An' unco sonsie.k

That day ye danc'd wi' muckle pride,
When ye bure hame my bonnie bride;
An' sweet an' gracefu' she did ride,
Wi' maiden air!

Kyle Stewart' I could bragged" wide,
For sic a pair.

Tho' now ye down but hoyte and hobble,
An' wintle like a saumont-cobble,P
That day ye was a jinker noble,

For heels an' win'!

An' ran them till they a' did wauble,
Far, far behin'.

When thou an' I were young an' skeigh,
An' stable-meals at fairs were dreigh,t

How thou wad prance, an' snore, an' skreigh,"
An' tak the road!

Town's bodies

ran and stood abeigh,

And ca't thee mad.

e A marriage portion. f Stout. g Mother, dam.

A Unlucky. i Peaceable to be handled. k Good-looking. A district in Aberdeenshire.

o Amble crazily.

m Challenged.
p Salmon fishing-boat.

That turns quickly. ↑ To reel.
Tedious, long about it.
10 Town people.

n Can.

Proud, high-mettled. u To scream. * At a shy distance.

When thou was corn't,y an' I was mellow,
We took the road ay like a swallow :
At Brooses thou had ne'er a fellow,
For pith an' speed;

But ev'ry tail thou paid them hollow,
Where'er thou gaed.

The sma', droop-rumpl't,a hunter-cattle,
Might aiblinsb waur'te thee for a brattle ;d
But sax Scotch miles, thou try't their mettle
An' gar't them whaizle:
Nae whip nor spur, but just a wattlef
Ó' saugh or hazle.

Thou was a noble fittie-lan',h

As e'er in tug or towi was drawn !
Aft thee an' I, in aught hours gaun,
On guid March weather,

Hae turn'd saxm rood beside our han'
For days thegither.

Thou never braindg't," an' fecht," an' fliskit,P
But thy auld tail thou wad hae whiskit,
An' spread abreed thy weel-fill'd brisket,
Wi' pith and pow'r,

Till spritty knowes wad rair't and risket,
And slypett owre.

When frosts lay lang an' snaws were deep,
An' threaten'd labour back to keep,

I gied thy cog" a wee bit heap

y Well fed with oats.

z A race at country weddings, who shall first reach the bride

groom's house on returning from church.

a That droops at the crupper. b Perhaps.

d A short race. e Made them wheeze.

g Willow.

h The near-horse of the hindmost pair in the plough.

k Eight.


Reeled forward. o Fought. p Fretted.

c Worsted.

fA twig.

m Six. q The breast.


i Rope.
r Small hills full of tough rooted plants or weeds.
✔ Make a noise like the tearing of roots.
Wooden Dish.


Aboon the timmer;"

I kenn'd my Maggie wad na sleep
For that, or simmer.x

In cart or car thou never reestit ;
The steyest braez thou wad hae fac'd it:
Thou never lap, and stent,b and breastit,
Then stood to blaw;

But just thy step a wee thing hastit,d
Thou snoov'te awa.

My pleugh is now thy bairn-time a';f
Four gallant brutes as e'er did draw:
Forbye sax mae I've sell't awa',g

That thou hast nurst:
They drew me thretteen pund an' twa'h
The vera warst.

Monie a sair dargi we twa hae wrought,
An' wi' the weary warl' fought!
An' monie an anxious day I thought
We wad be beat!

Yet here to crazy age we 're brought
Wi' something yet.

An' think na', my auld trusty servan',
That now perhaps thou 's less deservin',
An' thy auld days may end in starvin'
For my last fou,k

A heapet stimpart,m I'll reserve ane
Laid by for you.

We've worn to crazy years thegither;
We'll toyte" about wi' ane anither;

[blocks in formation]

d Hastened.

* Summer.

2 Steepest hill.

Sprung up, or forward.

e Went smoothly.

All the team belonging to my plough are of thy brood. g Besides six more which I have sold.

h Thirteen pounds and two-perhaps fifteen pounds is here meant, as the Poet praises the goodness of Maggie's stock. i Day's labour. k My last drinking bout. ! Heaped. The eighth part of a bushel.

n Totter.

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