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"May ne'er Misfortune's gowling bark
And seven braw fellows, stout and able,
I will not wind a lang conclusion
But if (which powers above prevent!)
Attended in his grim advances
1 A sobriquet for Mr. Hamilton, probably because of his acting in this capacity to some of the county courts.
By sad mistakes and black mischances,
Your humble servant then no more;
FAREWELL TO THE BRETHREN OF ST. JAMES'S LODGE, TORBOLTON.
TUNE- Good-night, and Joy be wi' you a'.
ADIEU! a heart-warm, fond adieu!
With melting heart, and brimful eye,
I'll mind you still, though far awa'. remember
Oft have I met your social band,
And spent the cheerful, festive night;
Which none but Craftsmen ever saw!
May Freedom, Harmony, and Love,
And you, farewell! whose merits claim,
To him, the Bard that's far awa'.1
1 The person alluded to in the last stanza was Major-General James Montgomery (a younger brother of Hugh Montgomery of Coilsfield), who now enjoyed the dignity of the Worshipful Grand Master in this village lodge, while Robert Burns was Depute Master.
ON A PROCESSION OF THE ST. JAMES'S LODGE.
The St. James's Lodge at this time met in a small stifling back-room connected with the inn of the village - a humble cottage-like place of entertainment kept by one Manson. On the approach of St. John's Day, the 24th of June, when a procession of the lodge was contemplated, Burns sent a rhymed note on the subject to his medical friend Mr. Mackenzie, with whom, it may be explained, he had lately had some controversy on the origin of morals.
FRIDAY first's the day appointed
To get a blad o' Johnnie's morals, liberal portion
The Master and the Brotherhood
Would a' be glad to see you;
For me I would be mair than proud
That Saturday you'll fecht him. fight
MOSSGIEL, An. M. 5790.
THE SONS OF OLD KILLIE.
Burns joined on at least one occasion in the festivities of the Kilmarnock Lodge, presided over by his friend William Parker; on which occasion he produced an appropriate song.
YE sons of old Killie, assembled by Willie,
Your thrifty old mother has scarce such another
I've little to say, but only to pray,
As praying's the ton of your fashion;
A prayer from the Muse you well may excuse, 'Tis seldom her favourite passion.
Ye powers who preside o'er the wind and the tide,
Who marked each element's border;
Who formed this frame with beneficent aim,
Whose sovereign statute is order;
Within this dear mansion may wayward Con
Or withered Envy ne'er enter;
May Secrecy round be the mystical bound,