« IndietroContinua »
I'll pu' the budding rose, when Phoebus peeps in view,
The lily it is pure, and the lily it is fair,
And a' to be a Posie to my ain dear May.
The hawthorn I will pu', wi' its locks o' siller gray,
The woodbine I will pu', when the e'ening star is near,
I'll tie the Posie round wi' the silken band o' luve,
ON GLENRIDDELL'S FOX BREAKING HIS CHAIN
THOU, Liberty, thou art my theme;
That a fantastic cap and rod has;
These things premised, I sing a Fox,
Glenriddell! Whig without a stain, A Whig in principle and grain, Could'st thou enslave a free-born creature, A native denizen of Nature?
How could'st thou, with a heart so good, (A better ne'er was sluiced with blood!) Nail a poor devil to a tree,
That ne'er did harm to thine or thee?
The staunchest Whig Glenriddell was, Quite frantic in his country's cause; And oft was Reynard's prison passing, And with his brother-Whigs canvassing The Rights of Men, the Powers of Women, With all the dignity of Freemen.
Sir Reynard daily heard debates Of Princes', Kings', and Nations' fates, With many rueful, bloody stories Of Tyrants, Jacobites, and Tories: From liberty how angels fell, That now are galley-slaves in hell; How Nimrod first the trade began Of binding Slavery's chains on Man; How fell Semiramis-God damn her! Did first, with sacrilegious hammer, (All ills till then were trivial matters) For Man dethron'd forge hen-peck fetters;
How Xerxes, that abandoned Tory, Thought cutting throats was reaping glory, Until the stubborn Whigs of Sparta
Taught him great Nature's Magna Charta; How mighty Rome her fiat hurl'd Resistless o'er a bowing world,
And, kinder than they did desire,
Has gagg'd old Britain, drain'd her coffer,
Thus wily Reynard by degrees,
POEM ON PASTORAL POETRY
HAIL, Poesie! thou Nymph reserv'd!
'Mang heaps o' clavers: And och! o'er aft thy joes hae starv'd, 'Mid a' thy favours!
Say, Lassie, why, thy train amang,
To death or marriage;
In Homer's craft Jock Milton thrives;
In thy sweet sang, Barbauld, survives
But thee, Theocritus, wha matches? They're no herd's ballats, Maro's catches; Squire Pope but busks his skinklin' patches O' heathen tatters:
I pass by hunders, nameless wretches,
That ape their betters.
In this braw age o' wit and lear,
Will nane the Shepherd's whistle mair
And rural grace;
And, wi' the far-fam'd Grecian, share
Yes! there is ane-a Scottish callan!
The teeth o' time may gnaw Tantallan,
Thou paints auld Nature to the nines,
Nae gowden stream thro' myrtle twines,
While nightly breezes sweep the vines,
In gowany glens thy burnie strays,
Wi' hawthorns gray,
Where blackbirds join the shepherd's lays, At close o' day.
Thy rural loves are Nature's sel';
Nae bombast spates o' nonsense swell;
Nae snap conceits, but that sweet spell
That charm that can the strongest quell,
VERSES ON THE DESTRUCTION OF THE WOODS
As on the banks o' wandering Nith,
And drank my fill o' fancy's dream,
Dark, like the frowning rock, his brow,
Amang his caves, the sigh he gave-
"There was a time, it's nae lang syne,
"When, glinting thro' the trees, appear'd
That, slowly curling, clamb the hill.