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And join with me a moralising,
And what is this day's strong suggestion? "The passing moment's all we rest on!" Rest on - for what? what do we here? Or why regard the passing year?
Will Time, amused with proverbed lore,
A few days may
Yes all such reasonings are amiss!
The voice of Nature loudly cries,
And live as those who never die.
(A sight Life's sorrows to repulse,
SPOKEN AT THE THEATRE, DUMFRIES, ON NEW-YEAR'S DAY EVENING .
"We have got a set of very decent players here just now. I have seen them an evening or two. David Campbell, in Ayr, wrote to me by the manager of the company, a Mr. Sutherland, who is a man of apparent worth. On New-year's Day evening, I gave him the following prologue, which he spouted to his audience with applause.” —– Burns to his brother Gilbert, 11th January, 1790.
No song nor dance I bring from yon great city That queens it o'er our taste the more's the
Though, by the by, abroad why will you roam? Good sense and taste are natives here at home. But not for panegyric I appear,
I come to wish you all a good New Year! Old Father Time deputes me here before ye, Not for to preach, but tell his simple story:
The sage grave ancient coughed, and bade me
"You're one year older this important day." If wiser, too—he hinted some suggestion, But 'twould be rude, you know, to ask the question;
And with a would-be roguish leer and wink, He bade me on you press this one word “think!”
Ye sprightly youths, quite flushed with hope and spirit,
Who think to storm the world by dint of merit,
Yet by the forelock is the hold to catch him;
Last, though not least in love, ye youthful fair,
And humbly begs you'll mind the important Now!
To crown your happiness he asks your leave, And offers bliss to give and to receive.
For our sincere, though haply weak endeav
With grateful pride we own your many fa
And howsoe'er our tongues may ill reveal it, Believe our glowing bosoms truly feel it.
MY LOVELY NANCY.
TUNE- The Quaker's Wife.
About this time [the end of January, 1790,] the Clarinda correspondence was for a moment renewed. Burns closed his first letter with the following song, being, he says, one of his latest productions. From few men besides Burns could any lady have expected, along with an apology for deserting her only twenty months ago, a pleasant-faced canzonet of compliment declaring the world to be lightless without love.
THINE am I, my faithful fair,
To thy bosom lay my heart,
Though despair had wrung its core,
Take away those rosy lips,
Rich with balmy treasure;
What is life when wanting love?
PROLOGUE FOR MR. SUTHERLAND'S BENEFIT-NIGHT, DUMFRIES.
Towards the conclusion of the theatrical season at Dumfries, Coila came once more to the aid of Mr. Manager Sutherland; but it cannot be said that her effusion was such as to hold forth a very favorable prognostic of dramatic effort.
WHAT needs this din about the town o' Lon'on, How this new play and that new sang is comin'? Why is outlandish stuff sae meikle courted? Does nonsense mend, like whisky, when imported?