Immagini della pagina
[blocks in formation]

"And wear thou this"-she solemn said,
And bound the holly round my head:

The polish'd leaves and berries red

Did rustling play;

And, like a passing thought, she fled

In light away.

[To Mrs. Stewart of Stair, Burns presented a manuscript copy of the Vision. That copy embraces about twenty stanzas at the end of Duan First, which he cancelled when he came to print the piece in his Kilmarnock volume. Seven of these he restored in printing his second edition, as noted on p. 174. The following are the verses which he left unpublished.]


After 18th stanza of the text (at "His native land"):—

With secret throes I marked that earth,

That cottage, witness of my birth;

And near I saw, bold issuing forth

In youthful pride,

A Lindsay race of noble worth,

Famed far and wide.

Where, hid behind a spreading wood,
An ancient Pict-built mansion stood,
I spied, among an angel brood,

A female pair;

Sweet shone their high maternal blood,
And father's air.'

An ancient tower2 to memory brought
How Dettingen's bold hero fought;
Still, far from sinking into nought,
It owns a lord

Who far in western climates fought,

With trusty sword.

1 Sundrum.-R. B. 2 Stair.-R. B.

Among the rest I well could spy
One gallant, graceful, martial boy,
The soldier sparkled in his eye,

A diamond water.

I blest that noble badge with joy,

That owned me frater.3

After 20th stanza of the text (at "Dispensing good"):

Near by arose a mansion fine1

The seat of many a muse divine;
Not rustic muses such as mine,

With holly crown'd,
But th' ancient, tuneful, laurell'd Nine,
From classic ground.

I mourn'd the card that Fortune dealt,
To see where bonie Whitefoords dwelt;5
But other prospects made me melt,

That village near;

There Nature, Friendship, Love, I felt,
Fond-mingling, dear!

Hail! Nature's pang, more strong than death!
Warm Friendship's glow, like kindling wrath!
Love, dearer than the parting breath

Of dying friend!

Not ev❜n with life's wild devious path,

Your force shall end!

The Power that gave the soft alarms
In blooming Whitefoord's rosy charms,
Still threats the tiny, feather'd arms,
The barbèd dart,

While lovely Wilhelmina warms

The coldest heart."

After 21st stanza of the text (at "That, to adore"):

Where Lugar leaves his moorland plaid,
Where lately Want was idly laid,

* Captain James Montgomerie, Master of St. James' Lodge, Tarbolton, to which the author has the honour to belong.-R. B. 4 Auchinleck.-R. B.

5 Ballochmyle. 6 Mauchline. Miss Wilhelmina Alexander. 8 Cumnock.-R. B.

I marked busy, bustling Trade,

In fervid flame,

Beneath a Patroness's aid,

Of noble name.

Wild, countless hills I could survey,
And countless flocks as wild as they;
But other scenes did charms display,
That better please,

Where polish'd manners dwell with Gray,
In rural ease.9

Where Cessnock pours with gurgling sound;1o
And Irwine, marking out the bound,
Enamour'd of the scenes around,

Slow runs his race,

A name I doubly honour'd found,11

With knightly grace.

Brydon's brave ward,12 I saw him stand,
Fame humbly offering her hand,
And near, his kinsman's rustic band,13
With one accord,

Lamenting their late blessed land

Must change its lord.

The owner of a pleasant spot,
Near sandy wilds, I last did note;"
A heart too warm, a pulse too hot
At times, o'erran:

But large in ev'ry feature wrote,

Appear'd the Man.

Tune "Whare'll our guidman lie."

O WHA my babie-clouts will buy?
O wha will tent me when I cry?
Wha will kiss me where I lie?
The rantin' dog, the daddie o't.
10 Auchinskieth.-R. B.
13 Dr. Fullerton.-R. B.

Mr. Farquhar Gray.-R. B. 12 Colonel Fullerton.-R. B.

11 Caprington.-R. B. 14 Orangefield.-R. B.

O wha will own he did the faut?
O wha will buy the groanin maut?
O wha will tell me how to ca't?

The rantin' dog, the daddie o't.

When I mount the creepie-chair,
Wha will sit beside me there?
Gie me Rob, I'll seek nae mair,
The rantin' dog, the daddie o't.

Wha will crack to me my lane?
Wha will mak me fidgin' fain?
Wha will kiss me o'er again?

The rantin' dog, the daddie o't.


Tune-"The Job of Journey-work."

ALTHO' my back be at the wa',
And tho' he be the fautor;
Altho' my back be at the wa',

Yet, here's his health in water.
O wae gae by his wanton sides,
Sae brawlie's he could flatter;
Till for his sake I'm slighted sair,
And dree the kintra clatter:
But tho' my back be at the wa',
And tho' he be the fautor;
But tho' my back be at the wa',
Yet here's his health in water!


My Son, these maxims make a rule,
An' lump them aye thegither;

The Rigid Righteous is a fool,

The Rigid Wise anither:

The cleanest corn that ere was dight

May hae some pyles o' caff in;

So ne'er a fellow-creature slight
For random fits o' daffin.

SOLOMON.-Eccles. ch. vii. verse 16.

O YE wha are sae guid yoursel',
Śae pious and sae holy,

Ye've nought to do but mark and tell
Your neibours' fauts and folly!
Whase life is like a weel-gaun mill,

Supplied wi' store o' water;
The heaped happer's ebbing still,
An' still the clap plays clatter.

Hear me, ye venerable core,

As counsel for poor mortals
That frequent pass douce Wisdom's door
For glaikit Folly's portals:

I, for their thoughtless, careless sakes,
Would here propone defences—
Their donsie tricks, their black mistakes,
Their failings and mischances.

Ye see your state wi' theirs compared,
And shudder at the niffer;
But cast a moment's fair regard,
What maks the mighty differ;
Discount what scant occasion gave,
That purity ye pride in;

And (what's aft mair than a' the lave),
Your better art o' hidin.

Think, when your castigated pulse
Gies now and then a wallop!
What ragings must his veins convulse,
That still eternal gallop!

Wi' wind and tide fair i' your tail,

Right on ye scud your sea-way;

But in the teeth o' baith to sail,

It maks a unco lee-way.

« IndietroContinua »