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An' when you think upo' your Mither,
Mind to be kin' to ane anither.


Now, honest Hughoc, dinna fail

To tell my Master a' my tale;

An' bid him burn this cursed tether,
An', for thy pains, thou'se get my blether.'

This said, poor Mailie turn'd her head, An' clos'd her een amang the dead.


LAMENT in rhyme, lament in prose,
Wi' saut tears trickling down your nose;
Our bardie's fate is at a close,

Past a' remead;

The last sad cape-stane o' his woes;

Poor Mailie's dead!

It's no the loss o' warl's gear,

That could sae bitter draw the tear,

Or mak our bardie, dowie, wear

The mourning weed:
He's lost a friend and neebor dear,
In Mailie dead.

Thro' a' the toun she trotted by him;
A lang half-mile she could descry him;
Wi' kindly bleat, when she did spy him,
She ran wi' speed:

A friend mair faithfu' ne'er cam nigh him,
Than Mailie dead.

I wat she was a sheep o' sense,
An' could behave hersel wi' mense:
I'll say't she never brak a fence,

Thro' thievish greed.

Our bardie, lanely, keeps the spence
Sin' Mailie's dead.

Or, if he wanders up the howe,
Her living image in her yowe,

Comes bleating to him, owre the knowe,

For bits o' bread;

An' down the briny pearls rowe

For Mailie dead.

She was nae get o' moorland tips,
Wi' tawted ket, an' hairy hips;
For her forbears were brought in ships
Frae yont the Tweed:
A bonnier fleesh ne'er cross'd the clips
Than Mailie dead.

Wae worth the man wha first did shape
That vile wanchancie thing-a rape!
It maks guid fellows girn an' gape,
Wi' chokin dread;
An Robin's bonnet wave wi' crape,
For Mailie dead.

O, a' ye bards on bonnie Doon!
An' wha on Ayr your chanters tune!
Come, join the melancholious croon

O' Robin's reed!

His heart will never get aboon

His Mailie dead.



Friendship! mysterious cement of the soul!
Sweet'ner of life, and solder of society!
I owe thee much.


DEAR SMITH, the sleest, paukie thief,
That e'er attempted stealth or rief,
Ye surely hae some warlock-breef

Owre human hearts;

For ne'er a bosom yet was prief

Against your arts.

For me,
And ev'ry star that blinks aboon,
Ye've cost me twenty pair o' shoon

I swear by sun and moon,

Just gaun to see you;

An' ev'ry ither pair that's done,

Mair taen I'm wi' you.

That auld capricious carlin, Nature,
To mak amends for scrimpit stature,
She's turn'd you aff, a human creature
On her first plan,

And in her freaks, on ev'ry feature,
She's wrote, the Man.

Just now I've taen the fit o' rhyme,
My barmie noddle's working prime,
My fancy yerkit up sublime

Wi' hasty summon:

Fae ye a leisure-moment's time

To hear what's comin?

Some rhyme, a neebor's name to lash;
Some rhyme (vain thought!) for needfu' cash;
Some rhyme to court the countra clash,

An' raise a din;

For me, an aim I never fash;

I rhyme for fun.

The star that rules my luckless lot,
Has fated me the russet coat,

An' damn'd my fortune to the groat;
But in requit,

Has blest me wi' a random shot
O' countra wit.

This while my notion's taen a sklent,
To try my fate in guid black prent ;
But still the mair I'm that way bent,

Something cries, 'Hoolie!

I red you, honest man, tak tent!

Ye'll shaw your folly.

'There's ither poets, much your betters,
Far seen in Greek, deep men o' letters,
Hae thought they had insur'd their debtors,
A' future ages;

Now moths deform in shapeless tetters,
Their unknown pages.'

Then fareweel hopes o' laurel-boughs,

To garland my poetic brows!

Henceforth I'll rove where busy ploughs

Are whistling thrang,

An' teach the lanely heights an' howes

My rustic sang.

I'll wander on, wi' tentless heed
How never-halting moments speed,
Till fate shall snap the brittle thread;
Then, all unknown,

I'll lay me wi' th' inglorious dead,

Forgot and gone!

But why o' death begin a tale?
Just now we're living sound and hale,
Then top and maintop crowd the sail,
Heave care owre side;

And large, before enjoyment's gale

Let's tak the tide.

This life, sae far's I understand,

Is a' enchanted fairy land,

Where pleasure is the magic wand,

That, wielded right,

Maks hours like minutes, hand in hand,

Dance by fu' light.

The magic wand then let us wield;

For, ance that five-an'-forty's speel'd,

See crazy, weary,

joyless eild,

W' wrinkl'd face,

Comes hostin, hirplin owre the field,

Wi' creepin pace.

When ance life's day draws near the gloamin,

Then fareweel vacant careless roamin;

An' fareweel chearfu' tankards foamin,

An' social noise;

An' fareweel dear deluding woman,

The joy of joys!

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