Sidor som bilder


Ye tiny elves that guiltless sport,

II. Like linnets in the bush,

November chill blaws loud wi' angry sugh ; Ye little know the ills ye court,

The shortening winter day is near a close ; When manhood is your wish.

The miry beasts retreating frae the pleugh, The losses, the crosses,

The blackening trains o'craws to their repose:
That active man engage!

The toil-worn cotter frae his labour goes,
The fears all, the tears all,

This night his weekly moil is at an end,
Of dim-declining age.

Collects his spades, his mattocks, and his hoes,

Hoping the morn in ease and rest to spend, And weary, o'er the moor, his course does hameward

bend. WINTER.


At length his lonely cot appears in view,

Beneath the shelter of an aged tree;

Th’expectant wee things, toddlin, stacher through The wintry west extends his blast,

To meet their dad, wi’ flichterin noise an'glee. And hail and rain does blaw;

His wee bit ingle, blinkin bonnily, Or, the stormy north sends driving forth

His clean hearth-stane, his thrifty wifie's smile, The blinding sleet and snaw:

The lisping infant prattling on his knee, While tumbling brown, the burn comes down,

Does a' his weary, carking cares beguile, And roars frae bank to brae;

An' makes him quite forget his labour an' his toil. And bird and beast in covert rest, And pass the heartless day.


Belyve the elder bairns come drapping in,

At service out, amang the farmers roun': “ The sweeping blast, the sky o'ercast,"

Some ca’ the pleugh, some herd, some tentie rin The joyless winter day,

A cannie errand to a neebor town: Let others fear, to me more dear

Their eldest hope, their Jenny, woman grown, Than all the pride of May:

In youthfu' bloom, love sparkling in her e'e, The tempest's howl, it soothes my soul,

Comes hame, perhaps, to show a braw new gown, My griefs it seems to join,

Or deposit her sair-won penny-fee, The leafless trees my fancy please,

To help her parents dear, if they in hardship be. Their fate resembles mine.


Wi' joy unfeign'd, brothers and sisters meet, Thou Power Supreme, whose mighty scheme An' each for others' wcelfare kindly spiers : These woes of mine fulfil,

The social hours, swift-wing’d, unnoticed fleet; Here, firm, I rest, they must be best,

Each tells the uncos that he sees or hears ; Because they are thy will!

The parents, partial, eye their hopeful years; Then all I want, (0, do thou grant

Anticipation forward points the view. This one request of mine !)

The mother, wi' her needle an' her sheers, Since to enjoy thou dost deny,

Gars auld claes look amaist as weel's the new: Assist me to resign.

The father mixes a' wi' admonition due.

Their master's an' their mistress's command,

The younkers a' are warned to obey;

6 An’mind their labours wi' an eydent hand, INSCRIBED TO R. A****, ESQ.

An'ne'er, though out o' sight, to jauk or play:

An'o! be sure to fear the Lord alway! Let not ambition mock their useful toil,

An' mind your duty, duly, morn an' night!
Their homely joys, and destiny obscure ;
Nor grandeur hear, with a disdainful smile,

Lest in temptation's path ye gang astray,
The short but simple annals of the poor.

Implore his counsel and assisting might:

GRAY. They never sought in vain that sought the Lord I.

aright!” My loved, my honour'd, much respected friend !

VII. No mercenary bard his homage pays;

But hark! 'a rap comes gently to the door ; With honest pride I scorn each selfish end;

Jenny, wha kens the meaning o' the same, My dearest meed a friend's esteem and praise ; Tells how a neebor lad cam o'er the moor, To you I sing, in simple Scottish lays,

To do some errands, and convoy her hame. The lowly train in life's sequester'd scene; The wily mother sees the conscious flame The native feelings strong, the guileless ways: Sparkle in Jenny's e'e, and flush her cheek;

What A**** in a cottage would have been ; With heart-struck, anxious care, inquires his Ah! though his worth unknown, far happier there,

name, I ween.

While Jenny hafflins is afraid to speak;

Weel pleased the mother hears, it's nae wild, * Dr. Young.

worthless rake.


XIV. Wi' kindly welcome Jenny brings him ben; The priest-like father reads the sacred page,

A strappan youth; he taks the mother's eye; How Abram was the friend of God on high ; Blythe Jenny sees the visit's no ill ta’en ; Or, Moses bade eternal warfare wage The father cracks of horses, pleughs, and kye.

With Amalek's ungracious progeny ; The youngster's artless heart o'erflows, wi’joy. Or how the royal bard did groaning lie But blathe and laithfu', scarce can weel behave;

Beneath the stroke of Heaven's avenging ire ; The mother, wi’a woman's wiles, can spy Or, Job's pathetic plaint, and wailing cry;

What makes the youth sae bashfu'an'sae grave; Or rapt Isaiah's wild, seraphic fire ; Weel pleased to think her bairn's respected like or other holy seers that tune the sacred lyre. the lave.


Perhaps the Christian volume is the theme,
O happy love! where love like this is found !

How guiltless blood for guilty man was shed ; O heartfelt raptures ! bliss beyond compare !

How He, who bore in heaven the second name, I've paced much this weary mortal round,

Had not on earth whereon to lay his head : And sage experience bids me this declare

How his first followers and servants sped; “ If heaven a draught of heavenly pleasure spare,

The precepts sage they wrote to many a land: One cordial in this melancholy vale,

How he, who lone in Patmos banished, 'Tis when a youthful, loving, modest pair,

Saw in the sun a mighty angel stand; In other's arms breathe out the tender tale,

And heard great Babylon's doom pronounced by Beneath the milk-white thorn that scents the even

Heaven's command.
ing gale.”


Then kneeling down, to Heaven's Eternal King, Is there, in human form, that bears a heart

The saint, the father, and the husband prays : A wretch! a villain ! lost to love and truth!

Hope “ springs exulting on triumphant wing," That can, with studied, sly, insnaring art,

That thus they all shall meet in future days : Betray sweet Jenny's unsuspecting youth?

There ever bask in uncreated rays, Curse on his perjured arts ! dissembling smooth !

No more to sigh, or shed the bitter tear, Are honour, virtue, conscience, all exiled ?

Together hymning their Creator's praise, Is there no pity, no relenting truth,

In such society, yet still more dear ; [sphere. Points to the parents fondling o'er their child? While circling time moves round in an eternal Then paints the ruin'd maid, and their distraction


Compared with this, how poor religion's pride, But now the supper crowns their simple board,

In all the pomp of method, and of art, The halesome parritch, chief o' Scotia's food :

When men display, to congregations wide, The soupe their only hawkie does afford,

Devotion's every grace, except the heart !

The Power, incensed, the pageant will desert, That 'yont the hallan snugly chows her cood : The dame brings forth in complimental mood,

The pompous strain, the sacerdotal stole ;

But haply, in some cottage far apart,
To grace the lad, her weel-hain'd kebbuck, fell,
An'aft he's prest, an'aft he ca's it guid;

May hear, well pleased, the language of the soul;

And in his book of life the inmates poor enrol. The frugal wifie, garrulous, will tell, How 'twas a towmond auld, sin' lint was i’ the bell.


Then homeward all take off their several way ; XII.

The yougling cottagers retire to rest : The cheerfu' supper done, wi' serious face, The parent pair their secret homage pay, They round the ingle form a circle wide;

And proffer up to Heaven the warm request The sire turns o’er, wi' patriarchal grace,

That He who stills the raven's clamorous nest, The big ha' Bible, ance his father's pride :

And decks the lily fair in flowery pride, His bonnet reverently is laid aside,

Would, in the way his wisdom sees the best, His lyart hafsets wearing thin an' bare ;

For them and for their little ones provide; Those strains that once did sweet in Zion glide, But chiefly, in their hearts with grace divine preside. He wales a portion with judicious care;

XIX. And " Let us worship God !” he says, with solemn air.

From scenes like these old Scotia's grandeur XIII.


That makes her loved at home, revered abroad: They chant their artless notes in simple guise ;

Princes and lords are but the breath of kings, They tune their hearts, by far the noblest aim :

“ An honest man's the noblest work of God:” Perhaps Dundee's wild warbling measures rise,

And certes, in fair virtue's heavenly road,
Or plaintive Martyrs, worthy of the name:

The cottage leaves the palace far behind ; Or noble Elgin beets the heavenward flame,

What is a lordling's pomp? a cumbrous load, The sweetest far of Scotia's holy lays :

Disguising oft the wretch of human kind, Compared with these, Italian trills are tame;

Studied in arts of hell, in wickedness refined ! The tickled ears no heartfelt raptures raise ; Mae unison hae they with our Creator's praise.

Pope's Windsor Forest.

O Scotia ! my dear, my native soil !

For whom my warmest wish to Heaven is sent !
Long may thy hardy sons of rustic toil
Be bless'd with health and peace, and sweet

content ! Aud O may Heaven their simple lives prevent

From luxury's contagion, weak and vile ! Then, howe'er crowns and coronets be rent,

A virtuous populace may rise the while, And stand a wall of fire around their much loved isle.

XXI. 0 Thou ! who pour'd the patriotic tide That stream'd through Wallace's undaunted

heart; Who dared to nobly stem tyrannic pride,

Or nobly die, the second glorious part, (The patriot's God, peculiarly thou art,

His friend, inspirer, guardian, and reward !) O never, never, Scotia's realm desert:

But still the patriot, and the patriot bard, In bright succession raise, her ornament and guard !



WHEN chill November's surly blast

Made fields and forests bare,
One evening, as I wander'd forth

Along the banks of Ayr,
I spied a man, whose aged step

Seem'd weary, worn with care ;
His face was furrow'd o'er with years,
And hoary was his hair.

“ Young stranger, whither wanderest thou?

Began the reverend sage ;
“ Does thirst of wealth thy step constrain,

Or youthful pleasure's rage ;
Or haply, press'd with cares and woes,

Too soon thou hast began
To wander forth, with me, to mourn
The miseries of man!

“ The sun that overhangs yon moors,

Out-spreading far and wide,
Where hundreds labour to support

A haughty lordling's pride ;
I've seen yon weary winter sun

Twice forty times return;
And every time has added proofs,
That man was made to mourn.

“ O man ! while in thy early years,

How prodigal of time !
Mispending all thy precious hours,

Thy glorious youthful prime!
Alternate follies take the sway ;

Licentious passions burn;
Which tenfold force gives nature's law,

That man was made to mourn.

V. “ Look not alone on youthful prime,

Or manhood's active might;
Man then is useful to his kind,

Supported is his right:
But see him on the edge of life,

With cares and sorrows worn,
Then age and want, О ill match'd pair !
Show man was made to mourn.

“ A few seem favourites of fate,

In pleasure's lap carest;
Yet, think, not all the rich and great

Are likewise truly blest.
But, O! what crowds in every land

Are wretched and forlorn ;
Through weary life this lesson learn,
That man was made to mourn.

“Many and sharp the numerous ills

Inwoven with our frame !
More pointed still we make ourselves,

Regret, remorse, and shame!
And man, whose heaven-erected face

The smiles of love adorn,
Man's inhumanity to man
Makes countless thousands mourn!

“See yonder poor, o'erlabour'd wight,

So abject, mean, and vile, Who begs a brother of the earth

To give him leave to toil; And see his lordly fellow worm

The poor petition spurn, Unmindful, though a weeping wife And helpless offspring mourn.

IX. “ If I'm design'd yon lordling's slave,

By nature's law design'd, Why was an independent wish

E’er planted in my mind ?
If not, why am I subject to

His cruelty or scorn ?
Or why has man the will and power
To make his fellow mourn?

<< Yet let not this too much, my son,

Disturb thy youthful breast:
This partial view of human kind

Is surely not the last!
The poor, oppressed, honest man,

Had never, sure, been born,
Had there not been some recompense
To comfort those that mourn!

XI. “O death! the poor man's dearest friend,

The kindest and the best!
Welcome the hour my aged limbs

Are laid with thee at rest!
The great, the wealthy, fear thy blow,

From pomp and pleasure torn;
But 0! a bless'd relief to those

That weary-laden mourn!"



O THOU unknown, Almighty Cause

Of all my hope and fear!

In whose dread presence, ere an hour,
Perhaps I must appear!

O thou dread Power, who reign'st above!

I know thou wilt me hear:

When for this scene of peace and love,
If I have wander'd in those paths

I make my prayer sincere.
Of life I ought to shun,

As something, loudly, in my breast,

The hoary sire-the mortal stroke,
Remonstrates I have done;

Long, long be pleased to spare !

To bless his little filial flock,

And show what good men are.
Thou know'st that thou hast formed me
With passions wild and strong;

And listening to their witching voice

She, who her lovely offspring eyes
Has often led me wrong.

With tender hopes and fears,

O bless her with a mother's joys,

But spare a mother's tears !
Where human weakness has come short,

Or frailty stept aside,
Do thou, All-Good! for such thou art,

Their hope, their stay, their darling youth,
In shades of darkness hide.

In manhood's dawning blush;

Bless him, thou God of love and truth,

Up to a parent's wish!
Where with intention I have err'd,

No other plea I have,
But thou art good; and goodness still

The beauteous, seraph sister band,

With earnest tears I pray,
Delighteth to forgive.

Thou know'st the snares on every hand,

Guide thou their steps alway!

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O THOU Great Being! what thou art

Surpasses me to know:
Yet sure I


that known to thee
Are all thy works below.
Thy creature here before thee stands,

All wretched and distrest;
Yet sure those ills that wring my soul,

Obey thy high behest.
Sure thou, Almighty, canst not act

From cruelty or wrath!
O free my weary eyes from tears,

Or close them fast in death!
But if I must afflicted be,

To suit some wise design ;
Then man my soul with firm resolves

To bear and not repine!


O THOU, the first, the greatest Friend

Of all the human race !
Whose strong right hand has ever been

Their stay and dwelling place!
Before the mountains heaved their heads

Beneath thy forming hand,
Before this ponderous globe itself

Arose at thy command :
That power which raised and still upholds

This universal frame,
From countless, unbeginning time

Was ever still the same.
Those mighty periods of years

Which seem to us so vast,
Appear no more before thy sight

Than yesterday that's past.
Thou givest the word : Thy creature, man,

Is to existence brought:
Again thou say'st,“ Ye sons of men,

Return ye into naught !”
Thou layest them, with all their cares,

In everlasting sleep ;
As with a flood thou takest them off

With overwhelming sweep.
They flourish like the morning flower,

In beauty's pride array'd ;
But long ere night cut down it lies

All wither'd and decay'd.

Alas! it's no thy neebor sweet, The bonnie lark, companion meet! Bending thee 'mang the dewy weet!

Wi’ spreckled breast.
When upward-springing, blythe to greet

The purpling east.
Cauld blew the bitter-biting north
Upon thy early, humble birth;
Yet cheerfully thou glinted forth

Amid the storm,
Scarce rear'd above the parent earth

Thy tender form. The flaunting flowers our gardens yield, High sheltering woods and wa's maun shield, But thou beneath the random bield

O'clod or stane, Adorns the histie stibble-field,

Unseen, alane. There, in thy scanty mantle clad, Thy snawy bosom sun-ward spread, Thou lifts thy unassuming head

In humble guise ;
But now the share uptears thy bed,

And low thou lies !
Such is the fate of artless maid,
Sweet floweret of the rural shade!
By love's simplicity betray'd,

And guileless trust,
Till she, like thee, all soil'd is laid

Low i' the dust.
Such is the fate of simple bard,
On life's rough ocean luckless starr'd!
Unskilful he to note the card

Of prudent lore,
Till billows rage, and gales blow hard,

And whelm him o'er! Such fate of suffering worth is given, Who long with wants and woes has striven, By human pride or cunning driven,

To misery's brink,
Till wrench'd of every stay but Heaven,

He, ruin'd, sink!
E'en thou who mourn'st the daisy's fate
That fate is thine-no distant date;
Stern ruin's ploughshare drives, elate,

Full on thy bloom,
Till crush'd beneath the furrow's weight

Shall be thy doom !



WEE, modest, crimson-tipped flower,
Thou's met me in an evil hour;
For I maun crush amang the stoure

Thy slender stem;
To spare thee now is past my power,

Thou bonnie gem.

I. ALL hail! inexorable lord ! At whose destruction-breathing word,

The mightiest empires fall ! Thy cruel wo-delighted train, The ministers of grief and pain,

A sullen welcome, all !
With stern-resolved, despairing eye,

I see each aimed dart;
For one has cut my dearest tie,

And quivers in my heart.

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