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Of home-news or foreign,

No murders or rapes worth the naming.

Our friends, the Reviewers,
Those chippers and hewers,
Are judges of mortar and stone, sir;
But of meet or unmeet,

In a fabric complete,

I'll boldly pronounce they are none, sir;

My goose-quill too rude is
To tell all your goodness

Bestow'd on your servant, the Poet;
Would to God I had one

Like a beam of the sun,

And then all the world, sir, should know it!

Lines to John M'Murdo, Esq. of Drumlanrig.1

Sent with some of the Author's Poems.

O COULD I give thee India's wealth,
As I this trifle send;

Because thy joy in both would be

To share them with a friend.

But golden sands did never grace
The Heliconian stream;

Then take what gold could never buy-
An honest bard's esteem.

1 One of the local gentry,


Rhyming Reply to a Note from
Captain Riddell.1

DEAR SIR, at ony time or tide,
I'd rather sit wi' you than ride,

Though 'twere wi' royal Geordie:

And trowth, your kindness, soon and late,
Aft gars me to mysel' look blatea_

The Lord in Heav'n reward ye!



Caledonia-A Ballad."

Tune-"Caledonian Hunts' Delight" of Mr Gow.

THERE was once a time, but old Time was then young,
That brave Caledonia, the chief of her line,
From some of your northern deities sprung,

(Who knows not that brave Caledonia's divine?)

From Tweed to the Orcades was her domain,

To hunt, or to pasture, or do what she would:

Her heav'nly relations there fixèd her reign,

And pledg'd her their godheads to warrant it good.

A lambkin in peace, but a lion in war,

The pride of her kindred, the heroine grew : Her grandsire, old Odin, triumphantly swore,—

"Whoe'er shall provoke thee, th' encounter shall rue!” With tillage or pasture at times she would sport, To feed her fair flocks by her green rustling corn; But chiefly the woods were her fav'rite resort, Her darling amusement, the hounds and the horn.

• bashful.

1 Written on the back of a rhyming invitation by Mr Riddell.

2 The mathematical figure in the

last verse is the most remarkable thing about the ballad.

Long quiet she reigned; till thitherward steers
A flight of bold eagles from Adria's strand:
Repeated, successive, for many long years,

They darken'd the air, and they plunder'd the land:
Their pounces were murder, and terror their cry,
They'd conquer'd and ruin'd a world beside;
She took to her hills, and her arrows let fly,
The daring invaders they fled or they died.

The Cameleon-Savage disturb'd her repose,
With tumult, disquiet, rebellion, and strife;
Provok'd beyond bearing, at last she arose,
And robb'd him at once of his hopes and his life:
The Anglian lion, the terror of France,

Oft prowling, ensanguin'd the Tweed's silver flood;
But, taught by the bright Caledonian lance,

He learned to fear in his own native wood.

The fell Harpy-raven took wing from the north,
The scourge of the seas, and the dread of the shore;
The wild Scandinavian boar issued forth

To wanton in carnage and wallow in gore:
O'er countries and kingdoms their fury prevail'd,
No arts could appease them, no arms could repel;
But brave Caledonia in vain they assail'd,

As Largs well can witness, and Loncartie tell.

Thus bold, independent, unconquer'd, and free,
Her bright course of glory for ever shall run :
For brave Caledonia immortal must be;

I'll prove it from Euclid as clear as the sun :
Rectangle-triangle, the figure we'll chuse :

The upright is Chance, and old Time is the base;

But brave Caledonia's the hypothenuse;

Then, ergo, she'll match them, and match them always.


To Miss Cruickshank,1

A very Young Lady.

Written on the Blank Leaf of a Book, presented
to her by the Author.

BEAUTEOUS Rosebud, young and gay,
Blooming on thy early May,
Never may'st thou, lovely flower,

Chilly shrink in sleety shower!

Never Boreas' hoary path,

Never Eurus' pois'nous breath,
Never baleful stellar lights,
Taint thee with untimely blights!
Never, never reptile thief
Riot on thy virgin leaf!

Nor even Sol too fiercely view
Thy bosom blushing still with dew! 2

May'st thou long, sweet crimson gem,
Richly deck thy native stem;
Till some ev'ning, sober, calm,
Dropping dews, and breathing balm,
While all around the woodland rings,
And ev'ry bird thy requiem sings;
Thou, amid the dirgeful sound,
Shed thy dying honours round,
And resign to parent Earth

The loveliest form she e'er gave birth.

Beware o' Bonie Ann.3

YE gallants bright, I rede you right,
Beware o' bonie Ann;
Her comely face sae fu' o' grace,
Your heart she will trepan:

1 A daughter of Mr Cruickshank, the master in the High School.

2 A MS. variant is :

Nor Phoebus drink with scorching ray

The freshness of thine early day.

8 Miss Ann Masterton, daughter of a writing master. Probably written in Edinburgh, in 1789.

Her een sae bright, like stars by night,
Her skin is like the swan ;
Sae jimply lac'd her genty waist,
That sweetly ye might span.

Youth, Grace, and Love attendant move,
And pleasure leads the van:

In a' their charms, and conquering arms,
They wait on bonie Ann.

The captive bands may chain the hands,
But love enslaves the man :

Ye gallants braw, I rede you a',
Beware o' bonie Ann!

Ode on the departed Regency Bill.1
DAUGHTER of Chaos' doting years,

Nurse of ten thousand hopes and fears,
Whether thy airy, unsubstantial shade
(The rights of sepulture now duly paid)
Spread abroad its hideous form
On the roaring civil storm,
Deafening din and warring rage
Factions wild with factions wage;
Or under-ground, deep-sunk, profound,
Among the demons of the earth,

With groans that make the mountains shake,
Thou mourn thy ill-starr'd, blighted birth;
Or in the uncreated Void,

Where seeds of future being fight,
With lessen'd step thou wander wide,

To greet thy Mother-Ancient Night.
And as each jarring, monster-mass is past,
Fond recollect what once thou wast:
In manner due, beneath this sacred oak,
Hear, Spirit, hear! thy presence I invoke !
By a Monarch's heaven-struck fate,
By a disunited State,

1 Fox insisted on a Regency during the insanity of George III.


opposed. The King began to recover in March 1789.

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