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There's themes enough in Caledonian story,
Written Would show the tragic muse in a' her glory.
TO A GENTLEMAN WHO HAD SENT THE POET A Is there no daring bard will rise, and tell I NEWSPAPER, AND OFERED TO CONTINUE IT How glorious Wallace stood, how hapless
FREE OF EXPENSE, fell ?
KIND Sir, I've read your paper through, Where are the muses fled that could produce
And, faith, to me 'twas really new ! A drama worthy o' the name o' Bruce;
How guessed ye, Sir, what maist I wanted ? How here, even here, he first unsheath'd the
This mony a day I've grain'd and gaunted, sword,
To ken what French mischief was brewin', 'Gainst mighty England and her guilty lord;
er guilty fora; Or what the drumlie Dutch were doin'; And after mony a bloody, deathless doing, Wrench'd his dear country from the jaws of | If Venus yet had got his nose off :
That vile doup-skelper, Emperor Joseph,
Or how the collieshangie works Oh for a Shakspeare or an Otway scene
Atween the Russians and the Turks; To draw the lovely, hapless Scottish Queen!
Or if the Swede, before he halt, Vain all th' omnipotence of female charms
Would play anither Charles the Twalt : 'Gainst headlong, ruthless, mad Rebellion's
If Denmark, ony body spak o't; arms.
Or Poland, wha had now the tack o't; She fell, but fell with spirit truly Roman,
How cut-throat Prussian blades were To glut the vengeance of a rival woman:
hingin; A woman--tho' the phrase may seem un
| How libbet Italy was singin'; civil
If Spaniard, Portuguese, or Swiss, As able and as cruel as the Devil !
Were sayin' or takin'aught amiss. One Douglas lives in Home's immortal page,
Or how our merry lads at hame, But Douglasses were heroes every age :
In Britain's court, kept up the game: And tho' your fathers, prodigal of life,
How royal George, the Lord leuk o'er A Douglas followed to the martial strife,
him! Perhaps if bowls row right, and Right suc
Was managing St Stephen's quorum; ceeds,
If sleekit Chatham Will was livin', Ye yet may follow where a Douglas leads!
Or glaikit Charlie got his nieve in;
How daddie Burke the plea was cookin', As ye hae generous done, if a’ the land
If Warren Hastings' neck was yeukin'; Would take the muses' servants by the
How cesses, stents, and fees were rax'd, Not only hear, but patronise, befriend them,
Or if bare ---- yet were tax'd; And where ye justly can commend, commend
The news o' princes, dukes, and earls,
Pimps, sharpers, bawds, and opera girls them; And aiblins when they winna stand the test,
If that daft buckie, Geordie Wales, Wink hard and say the folks hae done their
Was threshin' still at hizzies tails; best!
Or if he was grown oughtlins douser, Would a’ the land do this, then I'll be cau
And na o' perfect kintra cooser. tion
A’ this and mair I never heard of, Ye'll soon hae poets o' the Scottish nation,
And but for you I might despair'd of. Will gar fane blaw until her trumpet crack,
So gratefu', back your news I send you, And warsle Time, and lay liim on his back!
And pray, a' guid things may attend you ! For us and for our stage should ony spier, Ellisland, Monday Morning. “Wha's aught thae chiels maks a' this bus
tle here?" My best ley foremost, I'll set up my brow, We have the honour to belong to you!
Peg Ilirholson. (245) We're your ain bairns, e en guide us as ye Peg Nicholson was a good bay mare. like,
As ever trod on airn; But like gude mithers, shore before you
But now she's floating down the Nith, strike.
| And past the mouth o' Cairn. And gratefu' still I hope ye'll ever find us, For a' the patronage and meikle kindness Peg Nicholson was a good bay mare, We've got frae a' professions, sets and ranks ; ! And rode thro' thick and thin; God help us! we're but poor-ye'se get ! But now she's floating down the Nith, but thanks.
1 Aud wanting e'en the skin.
hut patronise, bend. commend
Peg Nicholson was a good bay mare,
The martial phosphorus is taught to flow, And ance she bore a priest;
She kneads the lumpish philosophic dough, But now she's floating down the Nith, Then marks th' unyielding mass with grave For Solway fish a feast.
designs, Peg Nicholson was a good bay mare,
Law, physic, politics, and deep divines : And the priest he rode her sair ;
Last, she sublimes th’ Aurora of the poles, And much oppressed and bruis'd she was,
The flashing elements of female souls.
The order'd system fair before her stood,
Half-jest, she cried one curious labour more.
Some spumy, fiery, ignis fatuus matter,
Such as the slightest breath of air might Thou bed, in which I first began
scatter; To be that various creature-Man!
With arch alacrity and conscious glee And when again the Fates decree,
(Nature may have her whim as well as we, The place where I must cease to be ;
Her llogarth-art perhaps she meant to showit) When sickness comes, to whom I fly,
She forms the thing, and christens it--a poet, To soothe my pain, or close mine eye;
Creature, tho'oft the prey of care and sorrow, When cares surround me, where I weep,
When blest to-day, unmindful of to-morrow, Or lose them all in balmy sleep;
A being form’d t'amuse his graver friends, 'When sore with labour, whom I court,
Admir'd and prais'd--and there the homage And to thy downy breast resort
ends: Where, too ecstatic joys I find,
A mortal quite unfit for fortune's strife, When deigns my Delia to be kind
Yet oft the sport of all the ills of life; And full of love, in all her charnis,
Prone to enjoy each pleasure riches give, Thou giv'st the fair one to my arms.
Yet haply wanting wherewithal to live; The centre thou—where grief and pain,
Longing to wipe each tear, to heal each groan, Disease and rest, alternate reign. Oh, since within thy little space,
Yet frequently unhecded in his own. So many various scenes take place;
But honest Nature is not quite a Turk, Lessons as useful shalt thou teach,
She laugh’dat first, then felt for her poor work. As sages dictate-churchmen preach; Pitying the propless climber of mankind, And man, convinced by thee alone,
She cast about a standard tree to find ; This great important truth shall own: And, to support his helpless woodbine state, “That thin partitions do diviile
Attach'd him to the generous truly great, The bounds where good and ill reside; A title, and the only one I claim, That nought is perfect here below;
To lay strong hold for help on bounteous But BLISS still bordering upon WOE." (247) Graham.
Pity the tuneful muses' hapless train,
Weak, timid landsmen on life's stormy main! First Epistle to flr. Grahant Their hearts no selfish stern absorbent stuff,
That never gives--tho'humbly takes enough; OF FINTRY.
The little fate allows, they share as soon, WHEN Nature her great masterpiece designed, U
Uulike sage proverb’d wisdom's hard-wrung And fram'd her last best work, the human
The world were blest did bliss on them depend, Her eye intent on all the mazy plan,
Ah, that “the friendly e'er should want a She formed of various parts the various man. friend!” Then first she calls the useful many forth; Let prudence number o'er each sturdy son, Plain plodding industry, and sober worth: | Who life and wisdom at one race begun, Thence peasants, farmers, native sons of Who feel by reason and who give by rule, earth,
[birth: (Instinct's a brute, and sentiment a fool!) And merchandise' whole genus take their Who make poor will do wait upon I should Each prudent cit a warm existence finds, We own they're prudent, but who feels And all mechanics' many-apron'd kinds.
they're good! Some other rarer sorts are wanted yet, Ye wise ones, hence! ye hurt the social eye! The lead and buoy are needful to the net; God's image rudely etch'd on base alloy! "The caput mortuum of gross desires (squires ; But, come, ye who the godlike pleasure know, Makes & material for mere knights and Heaven's attribute distinguished--to bestow!
THE FIVE CARLINES.
179 Whose arms of love would grasp the human And black Joan, frae Crichton Peel, race:
(grace; O’gipsy kith and kin-
To send a lad to Lon'on town,
. They met upon a day, I know my need, I know thy giving hand, i
| And mony a knight, and mony a laird, I crave thy friendship at thy kind command;
.! Their errand fain would gae.
[flows, But nae ane could their fancy please,
' And he wad do their errands weel,
And meikle he wad say,
And ilka ane at Lon'on court In all the clam'rous cry of starving want,
r! They dun benevolence with shameless front;
Would bid to him guid day. Oblige them, patronise their tinsel lays,
Then next came in a sodger youth (250), They persecute you all your future days!
And spak wi’ modest grace,
If sae their pleasure was.
But he wad hecht an honest heart,
Now, wham to choose, and wham refuse, height,
At strife their carlines fell!
For some had gentle folks to please, limer flight.
And some would please themsel.
And she spak up wi' pride,
And she wad send the sodger youth,
Whatever might betide.
She didna care a pin ; To send a lad to Lon'on town,
But she wad send the sodger youth To bring them tidings hame.
To greet his eldest son. (252) Nor only bring them tidings hame,
Then up sprang Bess o' Annandale, But do their errands there,
And a deadly aith she's ta’en, And aiblins gowd and honour baith
That she wad vote the border knight,
Though she should vote her lane.
And fools o change are fain;
But I hae tried the border knight, A carline auld and teugh.
And I'll try him yet again. And blinkin' Bess o’Annandale,
Says black Joan frae Crichton Peel, That dwelt near Solwayside,
A carline stoor and grim, And whisky Jean, that took her gill,
The auld guidman, and the young guidman, In Galloway sae wide.
For me may sink or swim;
For fools will freat o' right or wrang,
While knaves laugh them to scorn; But the sodger's friends hae blawn the
Ye weel ken, kimmers a',
His back's been at the wa’;
Is now a fremit wight:
I'll send the border knight.
And wrinkled was her brow,
Her auld Scots bluid was true;
I set as light by them;
Wham I like best at hame.
Nae mortal wight can tell:
May look weel to himsel.
O for a throat like huge Mons-meg (254),
Beneath Drumlanrig's banners;
To win immortal honours.
Led on the loves and graces ;
Among their wives and lasses.
Like Hecla streaming thunder;
And bar'd the treason under.
The wildest savaye Tory,
With Cyclopean fury.
Resistless desolation ;
And threaten'd worse damnation.
Second Epistle to Mr. Graham,
OF FINTRY. (253).
Are ye as idle's I am ?
And ye shall see me try him.
Of princes and their darlings ; And bent on winning borough towns, Came shaking hands wi' wabster louns,
And kissing barefit carlins. Combustion through our boroughs rode Whistling his roaring pack abroad,
Of mad, unmuzzled lions ; As Queensberry buff and blue unfurl'd, And Westerha' and Hopeton hurld
To every Whig defiance. But Queensberry, cautious, left the war, The unmanner'd dust might soil his star,
Besides, he hated bleeding; But left behind him heroes bright, Heroes in Cæsarean tight
Or Ciceronian pleading.
To these, what Tory hosts oppos’d; With these, what Tory warriors clos'd,
Surpasses my descriving : Squadrons extended long and large, With furious speed rush'd to the charge,
Like raging devils driving. What verse can sing, what prose narrate, The butcher deeds of bloody fate
Amid this mighty tulzie ? Grim horror grinn'd; pale terror roar'd As murther at his thrapple shor'd;
And hell mixt in the brulzie! As Highland crags, by thunder cleft, When lightnings tire the stormy lift,
Hurl down wi' crashing rattle;
Such is the rage of battle.
Before th' approaching fellers ;
Against the Buchan Bullers. (255)
CAPTAIN GROSE'S PEREGRINATIONS.
181 Lo, from the shares of death's deep night, l If in your bounds ye chance to light Departed Whigs enjoy the fight,
Upon a fine, fat fodgel wight,
Ostature short, but genius bright,
That's he, mark weel
And wow! he has an unco slight
O'cauk and keel.
By some auld houlet-haunted biggin, Bold Scrimgeour (257) follows gallant Gra
Or kirk deserted by its riggin, hame-- (258)
It's ten to ane ye'll find him snug in Auld Covenanters shiver
Some eldritch part, (Forgive, forgive, much-wrongd Montrose! Wi' deils, they say, Lord save's! colleaguin' While death and hell engulf thy foes,
At some black art.
Ilk ghaist that haunts auld ha' or chaumer,
And you, deep-read in hell's black grammar, But fate the word has spoken--
Warlocks and witches; For woman's wit, or strength of man,
Ye'll quake at his conjuring hammer,
Ye midnight bitches.
It's tauld he was a sodger bred,
But now he's quat the spurtle blade,
And dog skin wallet, That I might greet, that I might cry,
And ta'en the--Antiquarian trade, While Tories fall, while Tories fly,
I think they call it. And furious Whigs pursuing ! He has a fouth o' auld nick-nackets, What Whig but wails the good Sir James ;
Rusty aird caps and jingliu' jackets, Dear to his country by the names
Wad haud the Lothians three in tackets, Friend, Patron, Benefactor ?
A towmont guid; Not Pulteny's wealth can Pulteny save!
And parritch-pats, and auld saut-backets, And Hopeton falls, the generous brave!
Before the Flood. And Stuart bold as Hector!
Of Eve's first fire he has a cinder ; Thou, Pitt, shall rue this overthrow,
Auld Tubalcain's tire-shool and fender: And Thurlow grow) a curse of woe,
That which distinguished the gender And Melville melt in wailing!
.()' Balaam's ass; Now Fox and Sheridan rejoice!
A broom-stick o' the witch of Endor,
Weel shod wi' brass.
Forbye, he'll shape you aff, fu' gleg,
The cut of Adam's philabey ; He hears, and only hears the war,
The kuife that nicket Abel's craig, A cool spectator purely;
He'll prove you fully, So when the storm the forest rends,
It was a faulding jocteleg, The robin in the hedge descends
Or lang-kail gully.
But wad ye see him in his glee,
Guid fellows wi' him.
And then ye'll see him;
ANTIQUITIES OF THAT KINGDOM. (259) Now, by the pow'rs o’verse and prose! HEAR, land o' Cakes, and brither Scots,
Thou art a dainty chiel, oh Grose! Frae Maidenkirk (260) to Johnny Groats;
Whae'er othee shall ill suppose,
They sair misca' thee;
I'd take the rascal by the nose,
Wad say, shame fa’ thee,