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But here my Muse her wing maun cour; stoop
Sic flights are far beyond her power;

To sing how Nannie lap and flang
(A souple jad she was and strang),
And how Tam stood like ane bewitched,
And thought his very e'en enriched ;

Even Satan glow'red and fidged fu' fain, fidgeted
And hotched and blew wi' might and jerked about

main :

Till first ae caper, syne anither,

Tam tint his reason a' thegither,

And roars out: "Weel done, Cutty-sark!"
And in an instant all was dark:

And scarcely had he Maggie rallied,
When out the hellish legion sallied.


As bees bizz out wi' angry fyke,


When plundering herds assail their byke; hive
As open pussie's mortal foes,

When, pop! she starts before their nose;
As eager runs the market-crowd,

the hare

When "Catch the thief!" resounds aloud;
So Maggie runs, the witches follow,

Wi' monie an eldritch screech and hollow. frightful

Ah, Tam! ah, Tam! thou'll get thy fairin'! reward
In hell they'll roast thee like a herrin'!
In vain thy Kate awaits thy comin';

malevolent practices described in the poem. Neither her name nor her figure being appropriate (for she was a little woman), we confess we have doubts of this parallel.

Kate soon will be a woefu' woman!
Now, do thy speedy utmost, Meg,
And win the keystane1 o' the brig;
There at them thou thy tail may toss ;
A running-stream they darena cross!
But ere the keystane she could make,
The fient a tail she had to shake!
For Nannie, far before the rest,
Hard upon noble Maggie prest,
And flew at Tam wi' furious ettle,
But little wist she Maggie's mettle!
Ae spring brought off her master hale,
But left behind her ain gray tail:



The carline claught her by the rump, snatched at And left poor Maggie scarce a stump.

Now, wha this tale o' truth shall read,
Ilk man and mother's son take heed!
Whene'er to drink you are inclined,
Or cutty-sarks run in your mind,
Think ye may buy the joys ower dear:
Remember Tam o' Shanter's mare.

1 It is a well-known fact that witches, or any evil spirits, have no power to follow a poor wight any further than the middle of the next running-stream. It may be proper likewise to mention to the benighted traveller, that when he falls in with bogles, whatever danger may be in his going forward, there is much more hazard in turning back. — B.




Mrs. Dunlop had undergone a severe domestic affliction. Her daughter Susan had married a French gentleman named Henri, of good birth and fortune, and the young couple lived happily at Loudoun Castle, in Ayrshire, when (June 22, 1790) the gentleman sank under the effects of a severe cold, leaving his wife pregnant.

SWEET floweret, pledge o' meikle love,
And ward o' monie a prayer,

What heart o' stane wad thou na move,
Sae helpless, sweet, and fair!

November hirples o'er the lea

Chill on thy lovely form;

And gane, alas! the sheltering tree
Should shield thee frae the storm.

May He who gives the rain to pour,
And wings the blast to blaw,
Protect thee frae the driving shower,
The bitter frost and snaw!


May He, the friend of wo and want,
Who heals life's various stounds,
Protect and guard the mother-plant,
And heal her cruel wounds!

But late she flourished, rooted fast,
Fair on the summer-morn;
Now, feebly bends she in the blast,
Unsheltered and forlorn.

Blest be thy bloom, thou lovely gem,
Unscathed by ruffian hand,

And from thee many a parent stem
Arise to deck our land!


November, 1790.


"I have these several months been hammering at an elegy on the amiable and accomplished Miss Burnet. I have got, and can get no further than the following fragment.” — Burns to Mr. Cunningham, 23d January,


This beautiful creature, to whom Burns paid so

high a compliment in his Address to Edinburgh, had been carried off by consumption, 17th June, 1790.

LIFE ne'er exulted in so rich a prize

As Burnet, lovely from her native skies;
Nor envious Death so triumphed in a blow,
As that which laid the accomplished Burnet low.

Thy form and mind, sweet maid, can I forget? In richest ore the brightest jewel set!

In thee, high Heaven above was truest shewn, As by his noblest work the Godhead best is known.

In vain ye flaunt in summer's pride, ye groves; Thou crystal streamlet with thy flowery shore, Ye woodland choir that chant your idle loves, Ye cease to charm - Eliza is no more!

Ye heathy wastes, immixed with reedy fens,
Ye mossy streams, with sedge and rushes

Ye rugged cliffs, o'erhanging dreary glens,
To you I fly, ye with my soul accord.

Princes, whose cumbrous pride was all their worth,

Shall venal lays their pompous exit hail, And thou, sweet excellence! forsake our earth, And not a Muse in honest grief bewail?

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