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Come, kittle up your moorland harp

Wi' gleesome touch!
Ne'er mind how Fortune waft an' warp;

She's but a b-tch.

She's gien me monie a jest an' fleg,
Sin' I could striddle'owre a rig;
But by the L-d, tho' I should beg

Wi' layart pow,
I'll laughi an' sing, an' shake my leg,

As langs I dow!
Now comes the sax-an’-twentieth simmer
I've seen the bud ope' the timmer,
Still persecuted by the limmer

Frae year to year;
But yet, despite the kittle kimmer,

1, Rob, am here.

Do ye envy the city Gent,
Behind a kist to lie and skient,
Or purse-proud, big wi' cent. per centa

And muckle wane,
In some bit burgh to represent

A Bailie's name!

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Or, is't the paughty, feudal Thane,
Wi' ruffled sark an' glancing cane,
Wha thinks himsel nae sheep-shank bane,

But lordly stalks,
While caps and bonnets aff are taen,

As by he walks ?
O Thou wha gies us each good gist
Gie me o' wit an' sense a lift,
Then turn me, if Thou please, adrift,

Thro' Scotland wide;

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Wi' Cits nor Lairds I wadna shift,

In a' their pride!"
Were this the charter of our state,
"On pain of hell be rich an' great,"
Damnation then would be our late,

Beyond remead;
But tbanks to Heav'n! that's no the gate

We learn our creed :

For thus the royal mandate ran, When first the human race began“ The social, friendly, honest man,

Whate'er he be, 'Tis he fulfils great Nature's plan,

An' none but he !"

O mandate glorious and divine!
The ragged followers of the Nine,
Poor, thoughtless devils ! yet may shine

In glorious light,
While sordid sons of Mammon's line

Are dark as night. Tho' here they scrape, an' squeeze, an' growTheir wortbless neivefu' of a soul May in some future carcase howl,

The forest fright; Or in some day-detesting owl

May shun the light.

Then may Lapraik and Burns arise, To reach their native, kindred skies, And sing their pleasures, hopes, an’ joys,

In some mild sphere, Still closer knit in friendship’s ties,

Each passing year!

TO W. S***** N,


May, 1785.

I Gal your letter winsome Willie ;
Wi' gratefu' heart I thank you brawlie;
Tho? I maun say't, I wad be silly,

An' unco vain,
Should I believe, my coaxin billy,

Your flatt'rin strain.

But I'se believe ye kindly meant it, I sud be laith to think ye hinted Ironic satire, sidelins sklented

On my poor Musie; Tho' in sic phraisin terms ye’ve penn'd it,

I scarce excuse ye.

My senses wad be in a creel, Should I but dare a hope to speel, WiAllan, or wi' Gilbertfield,

The braes o fame; Or Fergusson, the writer-chiel,

A deathless name.

(O Fergusson! thy glorious parts Ill suited law's, dry musty arts! My curse upon your whunstane hearts,

Ye E’nburgh gentry! The tythe o' what ye waste at cartes,

Wad stow'd his pantry!)

Yet when a tale comes i' my head,
Or lasses gie my heart a screed,
As whyles the're like to be my dead,

(O sad disease!) I kittle up my rustic reed

It gies my ease.

Auld Coila now may fidge fu' fain
She's gotten Poets o' her ain,
Chiels wha their chanters winna hain,

But tune their lays
Till echoes a' resound again

Her weel-sung praise.

Nae Poet thought her worth his while, To set her name in measur'd style! She lay like some unkenn'd-ofisle

Beside New-Holland, Or whare wild-meeting oceans boil

Besouth Magellan.

Ramsay an' famous Fergusson Gied Forth an Tay a lift aboon; Yairow an' Tweed, to monie a tune,

Owre Scotland rings While Irwin, Lugar, Ayr, on' Doon,

Nae body sings.

Th' Illissus, Tiber, Thames an' Seine, Glide sweet in monie a tunefu' line! But, Willie, set your fit to mine,

An'cock your crest, W'U gar our streams and burnies shine

Up wi' the best.

We'll sing auld Coila's plains an fells, Her moors red-brown wi' heather-bells, Her banks an' braes, her dens an' dells,

Where glorious Wallace Aft bure the gree, as story tells,

Frae Southron billies.

At Wallace's name what Scottish blood But boils up in a spring-tide flood! Oft have our fearless fathers strode

By Wallace's side, Still pressing onward, red-wat shod,

Or glorious dy'd.

O'sweet are Coila's haughs an' woods, When lintwhites chant amang the buds, And jirkin bares, in amorous whids,

Their loves enjoy, While thro' the braes the cushat croods

Wi' wailfu' cry!

Ev'n winter bleak has charms to me, When winds rave through the naked tree; Or frosts on hills of Ochiltree

Are hoary gray; Or blinding drifts wild furious flee,

Dark'ning the day!

O Nature ! a' thy shews an' forms To feeling pensive hearts nae charms! Whether the summer kindly warms,

Wi' life an' light, Or winter howls, in gusty storms,

The lang, dark night!

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