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denuded the present lyric of two verses, and still it is long enough. The author, Alexander Ross, had not learned the art of being brief;- he continued to sing while there was any hope of a listener. Burns calls him “Ross, the wild warlock,” but there is little witchery in his verse ; it is humble, and homely, and accurate.


And are ye sure the news is true?
And are ye sure he's weel?
Is this a time to talk o' wark?
Ye jades, fling by your wheel !
Is this a time to think of wark,
When Colin's at the door?
Gie me my cloak! I'll to the quay,
And see him come ashore.
For there's nae luck about the house,

There's nae luck ava;
There's little pleasure in the house,

When our gudeman's awa.


up, and mak a clean fire-side,
Put on the muckle pot;
Gie little Kate her cotton gown,
And Jock his Sunday coat;

And mak their shoon as black as slaes,
Their hose as white as snaw ;
It's a' to please my ain gudeman,
He likes to see them braw.

There's twa hens upon the bauk,
Been fed this month and mair,
Mak haste and thra their necks about,
That Colin weel may fare ;
And spread the table neat and clean,
Gar ilka thing look braw;
It's a' for love of my gudeman,
For he's been lang awa'.

O gie me down my bigonets,
My bishop-sattin gown;
And rin an' tell the Baillie's wife
That Colin's come to town:
My Sunday shoon they maun gae on,
My hose o' pearl blue;
It's a' to please my ain gudeman,
For he's baith leal and true.

Sae true his words, sae smooth his speech,
His breath like caller air !

foot has music in't
When he comes up the stair :
And will I see his face again?
And will I hear him speak ?
I'm downright dizzy with the thought,
In troth I'm like to greet.

The cauld blasts of the winter wind,
That thrilled through my heart,
They're a' blawn by; I hae him safe,
'Till death we'll never part:
But what puts parting in my head,
It may

be far awa';
The present moment is our ain,
The neist we never saw !

Since Colin's well, I'm well content,
I hae nae mair to crave;
Could I but live to mak him blest,
I'm blest aboon the lave.
And will I see his face again?
And will I hear him speak?
I'm downright dizzy with the thought,
In troth I'm like to greet.

This is one of the finest domestic songs in the language-full of kind thoughts, female joy, and felicitous expressions. What can equal the flutter of delight into which the heroine is thrown by the approach of her husband! The many and the hurried commands which she gives to her maidens to trim the house and prepare the children, her own wish to appear before him in her best attire, with her hose of pearl blue, and the breathless rapture with which she asserts


foot has music in't
When he comes up the stair,

all stamp the verse with nature and truth.

For a while the song had no author's name ; at last, it passed for the production of an enthusiastic old woman of the west of Scotland, called Jean Adam, who kept a school and wrote verses, and claimed this song as her own composition. It happened, however, during the period that Mr. Cromek was editing his collection of Scottish Songs, that Dr. Sim discovered among the manuscripts of Mickle, the translator of the Lusiad, an imperfect, altered, and corrected copy of the song, with all the marks of authorship about it. The changes which the poet had made were many and curious, and were conclusive of his claim to the honour of the song: his widow added decisive testimony to this, and said that her husband wrote her a copy—said it was his own, and explained the Scottish words. Mickle, too, was a maker of songs in the manner of onr early lyrics, and his genius supports his title to this truly Scottish song. But I have not sought to deprive the old schoolmistress of the honour of the song, without feeling some .conscientious qualms. Many lyric poets have taken pleasure in secretly ekeing out the ancient songs of their country; and, after all, Mickle may have done no more for this than improve the language, and new-model the narrative.


The moon had climb'd the highest hili

That rises o'er the source of Dee,
And from the eastern summit shed

Her silver light on tow'r and tree;
When Mary laid her down to sleep,

Her thoughts on Sandy far at sea;
When soft and low a voice was heard,

Saying, Mary, weep no more for me.

She from her pillow gently rais’d

Her head, to ask who there might be;
She saw young Sandy shiv'ring stand,

With visage pale and hollow e'e:
O Mary dear, cold is my clay,

It lies beneath a stormy sea ;
Far far from thee I sleep in death,

So, Mary, weep no more for me.


Three stormy nights and stormy days

We toss'd upon the raging main,
And long we strove our bark to save,

But all our striving was in vain.
Ev'n then, when horror chill'd my blood,

My heart was fill’d with love for thee:
The storm is past, and I'm at rest,

So, Mary, weep no more for me.



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