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MY FATHER WAS A FARMER
Tune "The weaver and his shuttle, O."
My father was a farmer upon the Carrick border, O,
And carefully he bred me in decency and order, O;
He bade me act a manly part, though I had ne'er a farthing, O;
For without an honest manly heart, no man was worth regarding, O.
Then out into the world my course I did determine, O;
Tho' to be rich was not my wish, yet to be great was charming, O;
In many a way, and vain essay, I courted Fortune's favour, O;
Then sore harass'd and tir'd at last, with Fortune's vain delusion, O,
No help, nor hope, nor view had I, nor person to befriend me, O;
Thus all obscure, unknown, and poor, thro' life I'm doom'd to wander, O,
No view nor care, but shun whate'er might breed me pain or sorrow, O; I live to-day as well's I may, regardless of to-morrow, O.
But cheerful still, I am as well as a monarch in his palace, O,
Tho' Fortune's frown still hunts me down, with all her wonted malice, O:
I make indeed my daily bread, but ne'er can make it farther, O:
But as daily bread is all I need, I do not much regard her, O.
When sometimes by my labour, I earn a little money, O,
All you who follow wealth and power with unremitting ardour, O,
A cheerful honest-hearted clown I will prefer before you, O.
JOHN BARLEYCORN: A BALLAD
THERE was three kings into the east,
And they hae sworn a solemn oath
They took a plough and plough'd him down,
Put clods upon his head,
And they hae sworn a solemn oath
John Barleycorn was dead.
But the cheerful Spring came kindly on,
And show'rs began to fall;
The sultry suns of Summer came,
And he grew thick and strong;
The sober Autumn enter'd mild,
His bending joints and drooping head
His colour sicken'd more and more,
He faded into age;
And then his enemies began
To show their deadly rage.
They've taen a weapon, long and sharp,
And cut him by the knee;
Then tied him fast upon a cart,
Like a rogue for forgerie.
They laid him down upon his back,
They filled up a darksome pit
They laid him out upon the floor,
They wasted, o'er a scorching flame,
But a miller us'd him worst of all,
For he crush'd him between two stones.
And they hae taen his very heart's blood,
John Barleycorn was a hero bold,
For if you do but taste his blood,
"Twill make a man forget his woe; "Twill heighten all his joy;
"Twill make the widow's heart to sing, Tho' the tear were in her eye.
Then let us toast John Barleycorn,
Ne'er fail in old Scotland!
THE DEATH AND DYING WORDS OF POOR MAILIE, THE AUTHOR'S ONLY PET YOWE.
AN UNCO MOURnfu' tale
As Mailie, an' her lambs thegither,
Wi' glowrin een, and lifted han's
"O thou, whase lamentable face
"Tell him, if e'er again he keep
"Tell him, he was a Master kin',
"O, bid him save their harmless lives, Frae dogs, an' tods, an' butcher's knives! But gie them guid cow-milk their fill,
Till they be fit to fend themsel❜;
"An' may they never learn the gaets,
"My poor toop-lamb, my son an' heir,
O, bid him breed him up wi' care!
An' if he live to be a beast,
To pit some havins in his breast!
"An' warn him-what I winna name-
"An' neist, my yowie, silly thing,
But aye keep mind to moop an' mell,
Wi' sheep o' credit like thysel'!
"And now, my bairns, wi' my last breath,
I lea'e my blessin wi' you baith:
"Now, honest Hughoc, dinna fail,
This said, poor Mailie turn'd her head,