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So when the storm the forest rends,
Additional verse in Closeburn MS.
Now for my friends' and brothers' sakes,
Lord, send a rough-shod troop of hell
ON CAPTAIN MATTHEW HENDERSON,
A GENTLEMAN WHO HELD THE PATENT FOR HIS HONOURS IMMEDIATELY FROM ALMIGHTY GOD.
"Should the poor be flattered?"
But now his radiant course is run,
Matthew Henderson appears to have been a man about town," a kind-hearted, life-enjoying person,
whose agreeable manners perhaps often made him welcome at tables better furnished than his own. He had been one of Burns's good-fellow friends during the time he spent in Edinburgh, and he appears as a subscriber for four copies of the second edition of our bard's poems not, however, as Captain Matthew Henderson - but as "Matthew Henderson, Esq.," the "Captain" being, we understand, a mere pet-name for the man among his friends, adopted most likely from the position he held in some convivial society. Burns speaks of the poem as 66 a tribute to the memory of a man I loved much."
O DEATH! thou tyrant fell and bloody!
He's gane! he's gane! he's frae us torn,
Ye hills! near neibors o' the starns,
Come join, ye Nature's sturdiest bairns,
Mourn, ilka grove the cushat kens! wood-pigeon Ye hazelly shaws and briery dens! groves Ye burnies, wimplin' down your glens, meandering Wi' toddlin' din, purling
Or foaming strang, wi' hasty stens,
Mourn, little harebells o'er the lea!
At dawn, when every grassy blade
Ye maukins whiddin' through the hares skipping
Come join my wail!
Mourn, ye wee songsters o' the wood!
And mourn, ye whirring paitrick brood!
Mourn, sooty coots, and speckled teals!
Ye bitterns, till the quagmire reels,
Mourn, clam'ring craiks at close o' day, landrails
Ye houlets, frae your ivy bower,
Wail through the dreary midnight hour
O rivers, forests, hills, and plains!
Mourn, Spring, thou darling of the year!
Thy gay, green, flowery tresses shear
Thou, Autumn, wi' thy yellow hair,
Mourn him, thou Sun, great source of light!
For through your orbs he's ta'en his flight,
O Henderson! the man the brother!
Like thee, where shall I find another,
Go to your sculptured tombs ye great,