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My dying words attentive hear,
An' bear them to my master dear.

Tell him, if e'er again he keep
As muckle gear as buy a sheep,
O, bid him never tie them mair
Wi' wicked strings o' hemp or hair!
But ca' them out to park or hill,
An' let them wander at their will;
So may his flock increase, an' grow
To scores o' lambs, an' packs o' woo!

Tell him, he was a master kin',
An' ay was guid to me and mine;
An' now my dying charge I gie him,
My helpless lambs I trust them wi' him.

'O, bid him save their harmless lives,
Frae dogs, an' tods, an' butchers' knives!
But gie them guid cow milk their fill,
Till they be fit to fend themsel;
An' tent them duly, e'en an' morn,
Wi' teats o' hay, an' rips o' corn.

An' may they never learn the gaets

Of ither vile, wanrestfu' pets!

To slink thro' slaps, an' reave an' steal,
At stacks o' pease, or stocks o' kail.
So may they, like their great forbears,
For monie a year come thro' the sheers:
So wives will gie them bits o' bread,

An' bairns greet for them when they're dead.

'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,
To stay content wi' yowes at hame ;
An' no to rin an' wear his cloots,
Like ither menseless, graceless, brutes.

An' niest. my yowie, silly thing,
Gude keep thee frae a tether string!
O, may thou ne'er forgather up
Wi' ony blastit, moorland toop;
But ay keep mind to moop an' mell
Wi' sheep o' credit like thysel !

'And now, my bairns, wi' my last breath,

I lea'e blessin wi' my



An' when you think upo' your mither,

Mind to be kin' to ane anither.

'Now, honest, Hughoe, 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, And closed 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 of 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 no 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 makes 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.

To J. S****.

Friendship! mysterious cement of the soul!

Sweet'ner of life, and solder of society ♪

I owe thee much !.


DEAR S****, 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, I swear by sun an' moon, And every star that blinks aboon, Ye've cost me twenty pair o' shoon,

Just gaun to see you:

And ev'ry ither pair that's done,

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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.

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