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Among men of some figure who took notice of Burns, in consequence of the publication of his first volume of Poems was Mr. M'Adam of Craigengillan.

SIR, o'er a gill I gat your card,

I trow it made me proud;
"See wha taks notice o' the Bard!"
I lap and cried fu' loud.

Now diel-ma-care about their jaw,
The senseless, gawky million :
I'll cock my nose aboon them a’-
I'm roosed by Craigengillan!

'Twas noble, sir; 'twas like yoursel'
To grant your high protection:
A great man's smile, ye ken fu' well,
Is aye a blest infection;

Though, by his 1 banes who in a tub
Matched Macedonian Sandy!



my ain legs, through dirt and dub, puddle I independent stand aye.

1 Diogenes.

And when those legs to guid warm kail,

Wi' welcome canna bear me,

A lee dike-side, a sybow-tail, lonely wall - leek And barley-scone, shall cheer me.

Heaven spare you lang to kiss the breath

O' many flowery simmers!

And bless your bonny lasses baith

I'm tauld they're lo'esome kimmers !

And God bless young Dunaskin's laird,
The blossom of our gentry,

And may he wear an auld man's beard,
A credit to his country!






Another person of local eminence whose friendly regard Burns obtained through the merit of his poetical volume, was the Rev. Mr. George Lawrie, minister of the parish of Loudon, a few miles from Mossgiel. This appears to have been a remarkably fine specimen of the old moderate clergy of the Scottish establishment sensible, upright, kind-hearted, and with no mean taste in literature.

At Loudon manse, in a beautiful situation on Irvine

Water, entitled St. Margaret's Hill, the rustic bard paid the good minister a visit. He was received with the greatest cordiality, and immediately found himself in the midst of what was to him a scene equally novel and charming. Among the liberalities of Mr. Lawrie was a love of dancing, with a conviction that it was useful in promoting health and cheerfulness in his house. Scarcely a day passed in the manse when this exercise was not indulged. It was, therefore, exactly what might have been expected, that after dinner, or in the course of the evening, there was a dance, led by the excellent pastor and his lady, and in which Burns and other guests joined. Burns, it may be observed, though somewhat heavy-limbed, was a good dancer. He retired for the night, with feelings deeply touched by the simple refinement, goodnature, and mutual affection of this family, as well as by the unaffected kindness which had been shown to himself.

Он thou dread Power who reign'st above,

I know thou wilt me hear,

When for this scene of peace and love
I make my prayer sincere!

The hoary sire the mortal stroke,
Long, long be pleased to spare,

To bless his filial little flock,

And shew what good men are.

She, who her lovely offspring eyes
With tender hopes and fears,

Oh bless her with a mother's joys,

But spare a mother's tears!

Their hope, their stay, their darling youth,
In manhood's dawning blush

Bless him, thou God of love and truth,
Up to a parent's wish!

The beauteous, seraph sister-band,

With earnest tears I pray,

Thou know'st the snares on every hand
Guide thou their steps alway.

When soon or late they reach that coast,
O'er life's rough ocean driven,
May they rejoice, no wanderer lost
A family in heaven! 1

1 Miss Louisa Lawrie possessed a scrap of verse in the poet's handwriting -a mere trifle, but apparently intended as part of a lyric description of the manse festivities. Some little license must be granted to the poet with respect to his lengthening the domestic dance so far into the night.

The night was still, and o'er the hill

The moon shone on the castle wa';
The mavis sang, while dew-drops hang
Around her, on the castle wa’.

Sae merrily they danced the ring,

Frae eenin' till the cock did craw;

And aye the o'erword o' the spring, burden-tune
Was Irvine's bairns are bonny a'.



TUNE Roslin Castle.

The time for parting came (see the preceding piece), and the benevolent host was left by Burns under feelings deeply affected by the consideration that so bright a genius should be contemplating a destiny so dismal as a clerkship in the West Indies. A wide stretch of moor had to be passed by Burns on his way home.1 "His mind was strongly affected by parting forever with a scene where he had tasted so much elegant and social pleasure, and depressed by the contrasted gloom of his prospects. The aspect of nature harmonized with his feelings. It was a lowering and heavy evening in the end [beginning?] of autumn. The wind was up, and whistled through the rushes and long speargrass which bent before it. The clouds were driving acros♣ the sky; and cold pelting showers at intervals added discomfort of body to cheerlessness of mind." Under these circumstances, and in this frame, Burns composed what he considered as “the last song he

should ever measure in Caledonia."

THE gloomy night is gathering fast,
Loud roars the wild inconstant blast;
Yon murky cloud is foul with rain,
I see it driving o'er the plain.

1 Professor Walker gives the ensuing narration from the conversation of Burns in Edinburgh.

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