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The very sight o' Moodie's face
To's ain het hame had sent him

Wi' fright that day.
Hear how ne clears the points o' faith

Wi' rattlin' and wi' thumpin'!
Now meekly calm, now wild in wrath,

He's stampin' and he's jumpin'!
His lengthen'd chin, his turn'd-up snout,

His eldritch squeal, and gestures,
Oh, how they fire the heart devout,
Like cantharidian plasters,

On sic a day!
But, hark! the tent has changed its voice !

There's peace and rest nae langer :
For a' the real judges rise,

They canna sit for anger,
Smith* opens out his cauld harangues

On practice and on morals ;
And aff the godly pour in thrangs,
To gie the jars and barrels

A list that day.
What signifies his barren shine

Of moral powers and reason?
His English style, and gesture fine,

Are a clean out o' season.
Like Socrates or Antonine,

Or some auld pagan heathen,
The moral man he does define,
But ne'er a word o' faith in

That's right that day.
In guid time comes an antidote

Against sic poison'd nostrum;
For Peebles, frae the Water-fit, +

Ascends the holy rostrum :
See, up he's got the Word o' God,

And meek and mima has view'd it,
While Common Sense has ta'en the road,
And's aff and up the Cowgate, $

Fast, fast, that day.

1 Unearthly.

2 Primly. * Mr. (afterwards Dr.) George Smith, minister of Galston. Burns intended a compliment here on his rational mode of preaching, but the rev. gentleman did not appreciate the effort.

The Rev. Mr. (afterwards Dr.) William Peebles, minister of Newton-uponAyr, sometimes named, from its situation, the Water-fit.

Dr. Mackenzie, then of Mauchline, afterwards of Irvine, had recently conducted some village controversy under the title of “Common Sense.” Some local commentators are of opinion that he, and not the personified abstraction, is meant. is meant. Probably both are included.

§ A street so called which faces the tent in Mauchline.-B.

Wee Miller* neist the guard relieves,

And orthodoxy raibles,
Though in his heart he weel believes

And thinks it auld wives' fables :
But, faith! the birkie wants a manse,

So, cannily he hums them ;
Although his carnal wit and sense
Like hafflin-ways- o'ercomes him

At times that day.
Now but and ben the change-house fills

Wi' yill-caup commentators :
Here's crying out for bakes 3 and gills,

And there the pint-stoup clatters;
While thick and thrang, and loud and lang,

Wi’ logic and wi' Scripture,
They raise a din, that, in the end,
Is like to breed a rupture

O'wrath that day.
Leeze me on drink! it gies us mair

Than either school or college :
It kindles wit, it waukens lair,

It pangs us fou o' knowledge.
Be't whisky gill, or penny wheep,

Or ony stronger potion,
It never fails, on drinking deep,
To kittle* up our notion

By night or day.
The lads and lasses, blithely bent,

To mind baith saul and body,
Sit round the table weel content,

And steer about the toddy.
On this ane's dress, and that ane's leuk,

They're making observations ;
While some are cozie i' the neuk,5
And forming assignations

To meet some day.
But now the Lord's ain trumpet touts,

Till a' the hills are rarin',
And echoes back return the shouts,

Black Russellt is na sparin' ;


1 Rattles.
3 Cakes.

5 Snug in the corner. 2 Half-way.

4 Rouse. * The Rev. Mr. Miller, afterwards minister of Kilmaurs. He was of remarkably low stature, but enormous girth.

The Rev. John Russell, at this time minister of the chapel of ease, Kilmarnock, afterwards minister of Stirling-one of the heroes of "The Twa Herds." “He was,” says a correspondent of Cunningham's, "the most tremendous man I ever saw : Black Hugh Macpherson was a beauty in comparison. His voice was like thunder, and his sentiments were such as must have shocked any class of hearers in the least more refined than those whom he usually addressed."

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His piercing words, like Highland swords,

Divide the joints and marrow ;
His talk o hell, whare devils dwell;
Our vera sauls does harrow*

Wi' fright that day.
A vast, unbottom'd, boundless pit,

Fill'd fu' o'lowin' brunstane,
Whase ragin' flame, and scorchin' heat,

Wad melt the hardest whunstane!
The half-asleep start up wi' fear,

And think they hear it roarin',
When presently it does appear
'Twas but some neibor snorin'

Asleep that day.
'Twad be owre lang a tale to tell

How mony stories past,
And how they crowded to the yill

When they were a' dismist :
How drink gaed round, in cogs and caups,

Among the forms and benches :
And cheese and bread, frae women's laps,
Was dealt about in lunches,

And dauds that day.
In comes a gaucie, gashạ guidwife,

And sits down by the fire,
Syne draws her kebbuck 3 and her knife;

The lasses they are shyer.
The auld guidmen, about the grace,

Frae side to side they bother,
Till some ane by his bonnet lays,
And gies them't like a tether,

Fu’ lang that day.
Waesucks!' for him that gets nae lass,

Or lasses that hae naething!
Sma' need has he to say a grace,

Or melvies his braw claithing!
O wives, be mindfu'ance yersel

How bonny lads ye wanted,
And dinna, for a kebbuck-heel,
Let lasses be affronted

On sic a day!
Now Clinkumbell, wi' rattlin' tow,

Begins to jow and croon ;7
Some swagger hame, the best they dow,8

Some wait the afternoon. 1 Lumps. 4 Alas.

7 Sing and groan. 2 Fat and homely. 5 Soil.

8 Can. 3 Cheese.

6 Cheese-crust.
* Shakespeare's “Hamlet." —B.




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The following lines were written when the poet meditated emigrating to

A'YE wha live by sowps o' drink,
A' ye wha live by crambo-clink,3
A' ye wha live and never think,

Come, mourn wi' me !
Our billie's gien us a' a jink,

And owre the sea.

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