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When heavy, dark, continued, a'-day rain's
Wi' deepening deluges o'erflow the plains ;
When from the hills where springs the brawling Coil,
Or stately Lugar's moffy fountains boil,
Or where the Greenock winds his moorland course,
Or haunted Garpal* draws his feeble source,
Arous'd by blustering winds an' spotting thowes,
In mony a torrent down the snaw-broo rowes ;
While crashing ice, borne on the roaring speat,
Sweeps dams, an' mills, an' brigs, a' to the gate ;
And from Glenbuck,+ down to Ratton-key, I
Auld Ayr is just one lengthen'd, tumbling fea;
Then down ye'll hurl, deil nor you never rise !
And dash the gumlie jaups up to the pouring skics;
A leffon fadly teaching, to your cost,
That Architecture's noble art is lost!
NEW BRIG. Fine archite&ure, trowth, I needs must say o't! The L-d be thankit that we've tint the gate o't! Gaunt, ghaftly, ghaist-alluring edefices, Hanging with threat'ning jut like precipices;
* The Banks of Gargal.Water is one of the few places in the West of Scotland where those fancy-.caring beings, known by the name of Ghaists, still continue pertinaciously to inhabit.
+ The source of the river of Ayr.
A small landing. place above the large key.
O'er-arching, mouldy, gloom-inspiring coves,
Supporting roofs, fantastic, ftony groves :
Windows and doors in nameless sculptures drest,
With order, fymmetry, or taste unbleft;
Forms like some bedlam Statuary's dream,
The craz'd creations of misguided whim;
Forms might be worshipp'd on the bended knee,
And still the second dread command be free,
Their likeness is not found on earth, in air, or fea,
Mansions that would disgrace the building-taste
Of any mason, reptile, bird or beait ;
Fit only for a doited Monkish race,
Or frosty maids forsworn the dear embrace,
Or Cuifs of later times, wha held the notion,
That fullen gloom was sterling true devotion:
Fancies that our guid Brugh denies protection,
And soon may they expire, unbleft with resurrection!
A U L D BRIG. Oye, my dear-remember'd, ancient gealings, Were ye but here to share my wounded feelings ! Ye worthy Proveses, an'mony a Bailie, Wha in the paths o' righteousness did toil ay; Ye dainty Deacons, an' ye douce Conveeners, To whom our moderns are but causey-cleaners; Ye godly Councils, wha hae bleft this town; Ye godly Brethren o' the sacred gown, Wha meekly gae your burdies to the fmiters; And (what would now be strange) ye godly Writer::
douce folk I've borne aboon the broo, Were ye but here, what would you say or do! How would your spirits groan in deep vexation, To see each melancholy alteration; And, agonizing, curse the time and place When ye begat the base, degen'rate race! Nae langer Rev'rend Men, their country's glory, In plain braid Scots hold forth a plain braid story: Nae longer thrifty Citizens, an' douce, Meet owre a pint, or in the Council House ; But ftaumrel, corkey-headed, graceless Gentry, The herryment and ruin of the country; Men, three-parts made by Taylors and by Barbers, Wha waste your weel hain'd gear on d-d new Brig:
Now haud you there! for faith ye’ve said enough,
And muckle mair than ye can mak to through.
As for your Priesthood, I shall say but little,
Corbies and Clergy are a shot right kittle :
But, under favour o’your langer beard,
Abuse o' Magistrates might weel be spar’d;
Toliken them to your auld-warld squad,
I must needs say, comparisons are odd.
In fyr, Wag wits-nae mair can have a handle
To mouth • A Citizen,' a term o' scandal :
Nae mair the Council waddles down the street,
In all the pomp of ignorant conceit;
Men wha grew wise priggin owre hops an’ raisins,
Or gather'd lib'ral views in Bond and Seilins.
If haply Knowledge, on a random tramp,
Had fhor'd them with a glimmer of his lampy
And would to Common-fense for once betray'd them,
Plain, dull Stupidity ftept kindly in to aid them.
What farther clishmaclaver might been said,
What bloody wars, if Sprites had blood to shed,
No man can tell ; but, all before their fight,
A fairy train appear'd in order bright:
Adown the glittering stream they featly danc'd ;
Bright to the moon their various dresses glancd:
They footed o'er the wat'ry glass so neat,
The infant ice scarce bent beneath their feet:
While arts of Minstrelfy among them rung,
And soul-ennobling Bards heroic ditties fung.
O bad M Lauchlan,* thairm-inspiring Sage,
Been there to hear this heavenly band engage,
When thro' his dear Strathspeys they bore with
Highland rage ;
Or when they struck old Scotia's melting airs,
The lovers raptur'd joys, or bleeding cares;
How would his Highland lug been nobler fir’d,
And ev'n his matchless hand with finer touch inspir'd !
* A well-known performer of Scottish music on the violin.
No guess could tell what instrument appear'd,
But all the soul of Music's self was heard ;
Harmonivus concert rung
every part, While fimple melody pour'd moving on the heart,
The Genius of the Stream in front appears,
A venerable Chief advanc'd in years !
His hoary head with water-lilies crown'd,
His manly leg with garter tangle bound.
Next came the loveliest pair in all the ring,
Sweet Female Beauty hand in hand with Spring;
Then, crown'd with Aow'ry hay, came Rural Joy,
And Summer, with his fervid-beaming eye:
All chearing plenty, with her flowing horn,
Led yellow Autumn wreathed with nodding corn;
Then Winter's time-bleach'd locks did hoary show,
By Hospitality with cloudless brow;
Next follow'd Courage with his martial ftride,
From where the Feal wild-woody coverts hide;
Benevolence, with mild, benignant air,
A female form, came from the tow'rs of Stair :
Learning and Worth in equal measures trode,
From fimple Catrine, their long-lov'd abode : .
Laft, white-rob'd Peace, crown'd with a hazle wreath,
To ruftic Agriculture did bequeath
The broken, iron instruments of Death,
At fight of whom our Sprites forgat their kindling