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Wi' pinch I put a sunday's face on, An' snoov'd awa' before the sessionI made an open, fair confession,
I scorn'd to lie; An' syne Mess John, beyond expression,
Fell foul o' me.
A fornicator loun he call'd me,
An' said my falt frae bliss expellid me,
Iown'd the tale was true he tellid me,
“But what the matter," Quo' I, “I fear unless ye geld me,
I'll ne'er be better."
“Geld you!" quo' he, “and whatfore no, If that your right hand, leg or toe, Should ever prove your sp'ritual foe,
You shou'd remember To cut it aff, an' whatfore no
Your dearest member."
"Na, Na," quo' I,"I'm no for that, Gelding's nae better than 'tis ca't, I'd rather suffer for my faut,
A hearty flewit, As sair owre hip as ye can draw't!
Tho' I should rue it.
"Or gin ye like to end the bother, To please us a' I've just ae ither, When next wi' yon lass I forgather,
Whate'er betide it, I'll frankly gie her't a' thegither,
An' let her guide it."
But, Sir, this pleas'd them warst ava,
An' therefore, Tam, when that I saw,
I said “Gude night,” and cam awa',
An' left the Session;
I saw they were resolved a'
On my oppression.
WITH A PORTRAIT OF THE AUTHOR.
REVERED defender of beauteous Stuart,
Of Stuart, a name once respected, A name, which to love was the mark of a true heart,
But now 'tis despised and neglected. Tho' something like moisture conglobes in my eye,
Let no one misdeem me disloyal ;
A poor friendless wanderer may well claim a sigh,
Still more, if that wand'rer were royal.
My fathers that name bave rever'd on a throne;
My fathers have fallen to right it;
Those fathers would spurn their degenerate son,
That name should he scoffingly slight it.
Still in prayers for K-G-I most heartily join,
The Q-, and the rest of the gentry,
Be they wise, be they foolish, is nothing of mine;
Their title's avow'd by my country.
But why of this epocha make such a fuss,
But loyalty, truce! we're on dangerous ground,
Who knows how the fashions may alter ?” The doctrine to-day that is loyalty sound,
To-morrow may bring us a halter.
send you a trifle, a head of a Bard,
A trifle scarce worthy your care,
But accept it, good sir, as a mark of regard,
Sincere as a saint's dying prayer.
Now life's chilly evening dim shades on your eye,
And ushers the long dreary night; But you, like the star that athwart gilds the sky,
Your course to the latest is bright.
TO R. GRAHAM, ESQ. OF FINTRA.
WHEN Nature her great master-piece design'd,
And fram'd her last, best work, the human mind,
Her eye intent on all the mazy plan,
She form'd of various parts the various man.
Then first she calls the useful many forth; Plain, plodding industry, and sober worth; Thence peasants, farmers, native sons of earth, And merchandise, whole genus take their birth ;
Each prudent cit a warm existence finds,
And all mechanics' many apron'd kinds.
Some other rarer sorts are wanted yet,
The lead and buoy are needful to the net;
The caput mortuum of gross desires
Makes a material for mere knights and squires ;
The martial phosphorus is taught to flow,
She kneads the lumpish, philosophic dough,
Then marks th' unyielding mass with grave designs,
Law, physics, politics, and deep divines;
Last she sublimes the Aurora of the poles,
The flashing elements of female souls.
The order'd system fair before her stood,
Nature, well pleas'd, pronounced it very good;
But ere she gave creating labor o'er,
Half jest, she tried one curious labor more,
Some spumy, fiery, ignis fatuus matter;
Such as the slightest breath of air might scatter;
With arch-alacrity and conscious glee
(Nature may have her whim as well as we,
Her Hogarth-art perhaps she meant to show it)
She forms the thing, and christens it-a poet.
Creature, though oft the prey of care and sorrow,
When blest to-day unmindful of to-morrow.
A being form’d to amuse his graver friends,
Admir'd and prais'd-and there the homage ends;
A mortal quite unfit for Fortune's strife,
Yet oft the sport of all the ills of life;
Prone to enjoy each pleasure riches give,
Yet haply wanting wherewithal to live;
Longing to wipe each tear, to heal each groan,
Yet frequent all unbeeded in his own.
But honest Nature is not quite a Turk,
She laugh'd at first, then felt for her poor work,
Pitying the propless climber of mankind,
She cast about a standard-tree to find :
And, to support his helpless woodbine state;
Attach'd him to the generous truly great,
A title, and the only one I claim,
To lay strong hold for help on bounteous Graham.
Pity the tuneful Muses' hapless train,
Weak, timid landmen on life's stormy main !
Their hearts no selfish, stern, absorbent stuff,
That neither gives--though humbly takes enough
The little fate allows, they share as soon,
Unlike sage, proverb'd Wisdom's hard-wrung boon:
The world were bless'd did bliss on them depend,
Ah! that “the friendly e'er should want a friend!
Let prudence number o'er each sturdy son,
Who life and wisdom at one race begun,
Who feel by reason, and who give by rule,
(Instinct's a brute, and sentiment a fool!)
Who make poor will do wait upon I should
We own they're prudent, but who feels they're good?
Ye wise ones, hence! ye hurt the social eye!
God's image rudely etch'd on base alloy!
But come ye who the god-like pleasure know,
Heaven's attribute distinguish'd-to bestow !
Whose arms of love would grasj) the human race ;
Come thou who giv’st with all a courtier's grace;
Friend of my life, true patron of my rhymes !
Prop of my dearest hopes for future times.
Why shrinks my soul half-blushing, half-afraid,
Backward, abashed to ask thy friendly aid ?
I know my need, I know thy giving hand,
I crave thy friendship at thy kind command;
But there are such who court the tuneful nine
Heavens! should the branded character be mine
Whose verse in manhood's pride sublimely flows;
Yet vilest reptiles in their begging prose,
Mark, how their lofty, independent spirit
Soars on the spurning wing of injured merit!