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But bring a Scotsman frae his hill, Clap in his cheek a Highland gill, Say, such is royal George's will,
An' there's the foe,
He has nae thought but how to kill
Twa at a blow.
Nae cauld, faint-hearted doubtings tease him; Death comes, wi' fearless eye he sees him; Wi' bluidy hand a welcome gies him;
An' when he fa's,
His latest draught o' breathin lea'es him
Sages their solemn een may steek An' raise a philosophic reek,
An' physically causes seek,
In clime and season;
But tell me Whisky's name in Greek,
I'll tell the reason.
Scotland, my auld, respected Mither! Tho' whiles ye moistify your leather, Till whare ye sit, on craps o' heather, Ye tine your dam;
Freedom and Whisky gang thegither!
Tak aff your dram!
THE HOLY FAIR.*
A robe of seeming truth and trust
And secret hung, with poison'd crust,
A mask that like the gorget show'd,
UPON a simmer Sunday morn,
The rising sun owre Galston muirs,
Wi' glorious light was glintin;
The hares were hirplin down the furs,
The lav'rocks they were chantin
Fu' sweet that day.
Holy Fair is a common phrase in the West of Scot
land for a sacramental occasion.
As lightsomely I glowr'd abroad,
Three Hizzies, early at the road,
Twa had manteeles o' dolefu' black,
The third, that gaed a-wee a-back,
Was in the fashion shining,
The twa appear'd like sisters twin,
The third cam up, hap-step-an'-lowp,
As light as ony lambie,
An' wi' a curchie low did stoop,
As soon as e'er she saw me,
Fu' kind that day.
Wi' bonnet aff, quoth I, 'Sweet lass,
But yet I canna name ye.'
Quo' she, an' laughin as she spak,
'Ye, for my sake, hae gi'en the feck
Of a' the ten commands
A screed some day.
My name is Fun-your cronie dear,
The nearest friend ye hae;
An' this is Superstition here,
An' that's Hypocrisy.
'I'm gaun to ********* Holy Fair, 'To spend an hour in daffin :
'Gin ye'll go there, yon runkl'd pair,
'We will get
"At them this day.'
Quoth I, 'With a' my heart, I'll do't ;
I'll get my Sunday's sark on,
• An' meet you on the holy spot;
Faith we'se hae fine remarkin!
Then I gaed hame at crowdie-time
For roads were clad, frae side to side,
Wi' monie a wearie body,
In droves that day.
Here farmers gash, in ridin graith
There, swankies young, in braw braid-claith
In silks an' scarlets glitter;
Wi' sweet-milk and cheese, in monie a whang,
An' farls bak'd wi' butter
Fu' crump that day.
When by the plate we set our nose,
Some carrying dales, some chairs an' stools,
An' some are busy blethrin
Right loud that day.
Here stands a shed to fend the show'rs,
Are blinkin at the entry.