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Robert Burns

¤  Robert Burns ⇐ [1759-1796] ⇒ The Peoples Poet ⇐[BBC doc]

“When death’s dark stream I ferry o’er,
A time that surely shall come;
In Heaven itself, I’ll ask no more,
Than just a Highland welcome.”
◊→  A RED, RED ROSE”  ⇓

 
O, my luve’s like a red, red rose,R_Burns
That’s newly sprung in June.
O, my luve’s like the melodie,
That’s sweetly play’d in tune.
As fair art though, my bonnie lass,
So deep in luve am I,
And I will luve thee still, my dear,
Till a’ the seas gang dry.
 
Till a’ the seas gang dry, my dear,
And the rocks melt wi’ the sun!
And I will luve thee still, my dear,
While the sands o’ life shall run.
And fare thee weel, my only luve,
And fare thee weel a while!
And I will come again my luve,
Tho, it were ten thousand mile!
♦ “To a Mouse” [Robert Burns]  ↓

Small, sleek, cowering, timorous beast, O, what a panic is in your breast!
You need not run away so quickly squeaking with alarm!
I would not want to run and chase you, with a murdering spade.
I’m truly sorry man’s dominion has broken Nature’s social union,
And justifies that ill opinion which makes thee startle
At me, thy poor, earth born companion and fellow mortal!
 
I don’t doubt that sometimes you may steal;
What then? Poor beast, you must live!
An occasional ear of twenty-four bundles Is a small request;
I’ll get a blessing with what’s left, and never miss it.
 
Your small house, too, in ruin!  It’s fragile walls the winds are blowing!
And nothing now, to build a new one, of thick green grass!
And bleak December’s winds coming, both harsh and keen!
 
You saw the fields laid bare and wasted, and weary winter coming fast,
And cozy here, beneath the blast, you thought to dwell,
Till crash! the cruel ploughshare past out through your cell.
That small bit heap of leaves and stubble has cost you many a weary nibble!
Now you are turned out, for all your trouble, without house or holding,
To endure the winter’s sleety dribble, and hoar-frost cold.
 
But Mouse, you are not alone, in proving foresight may be vain:
The best laid schemes of mice and men go often awry,
And leave us naught but grief and pain, for promised joy!
 
Still you are blest, compared with me!
The present only touches thee:
But oh! I backward cast my eye, on prospects dreary!
And forward, though I cannot see, I guess and fear!
•→“The Twa Dogs” ⇔ [listen] ⇐
♦  ‘Ae Fond Kiss’  ↓

Ae fond kiss, and then we sever; 
Ae fareweel, alas, for ever! 
Deep in heart-wrung tears I’ll pledge thee, 
Warring sighs and groans I’ll wage thee. 
Who shall say that Fortune grieves him, 
While the star of hope she leaves him? 
Me, nae cheerful twinkle lights me; 
Dark despair around benights me. 

I’ll ne’er blame my partial fancy, 
Naething could resist my Nancy: 
But to see her was to love her; 
Love but her, and love for ever. 
Had we never lov’d sae kindly, 
Had we never lov’d sae blindly, 
Never met-or never parted, 
We had ne’er been broken-hearted. 

Fare-thee-weel, thou first and fairest! 
Fare-thee-weel, thou best and dearest! 
Thine be ilka joy and treasure, 
Peace, Enjoyment, Love and Pleasure! 
Ae fond kiss, and then we sever! 
Ae fareweeli alas, for ever! 
Deep in heart-wrung tears I’ll pledge thee, 
Warring sighs and groans I’ll wage thee.

•→ “Ye Banks and Braes O’ Bonnie Doon” ⇔ [lyrics] ⇐
♦  ‘A Man’s a Man for A’ That’ ↓  [Ian Benzie = voice]

Is there for honest Poverty that hings his head, an’ a’ that;
The coward slave-we pass him by, We dare be poor for a’ that!
For a’ that, an’ a’ that. Our toils obscure an’ a’ that,
The rank is but the guinea’s stamp, The Man’s the gowd for a’ that.
 
What though on hamely fare we dine, wear hoddin grey, an’ a that;
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine;  a Man’s a Man for a’ that:
For a’ that, and a’ that, Their tinsel show, an’ a’ that;
The honest man, tho’ e’er sae poor, is king o’ men for a’ that.
 
Ye see yon birkie, ca’d a lord, wha struts, an’ stares, an’ a’ that;
Tho’ hundreds worship at his word, he’s but a coof for a’ that:
For a’ that, an’ a’ that, his ribband, star, an’ a’ that:
The man o’ independent mind, he looks an’ laughs at a’ that.
 
A prince can mak a belted knight, a marquis, duke, an’ a’ that;
But an honest man’s abon his might, gude faith, he maunna fa’ that!
For a’ that, an’ a’ that, their dignities an’ a’ that;
The pith o’ sense, an’ pride o’ worth, are higher rank than a’ that.
 
Then let us pray that come it may, (As come it will for a’ that,)
That Sense and Worth, o’er a’ the earth, shall bear the gree, an’ a’ that.
For a’ that, an’ a’ that, it’s coming yet for a’ that,
That Man to Man, the world o’er, shall brothers be for a’ that.
•→ Joann Gilmartin “Mary Morison”
♦  ‘Rattlin Roarin Willie’  ↓

O Rattlin, roarin Willie, O he held to the fair,
An’ for to sell his fiddle and buy some other ware;
But parting wi’ his fiddle, the saut tear blin’t his e’e;
And Rattlin, roaring Willie, Ye’re welcome hame to me!

O Willie, come sell your fiddle, O, Sell your fiddle sae fine;
O Willie, come sell your fiddle, And buy a pint o’ wine;
If I should sell my fiddle, The warl’ would think I was mad;
For mony a rantin day My fiddle and I hae had.

As I cam by Crochallan, I cannilie keekit ben;R_Burns
Rattlin, roarin Willie was sitting at yon boord-en’,
Sitting at yon boord-en’, and amang gude companie;
Rattlin, roarin Willie,  Ye’re welcome hame to me!

O Willie, come sell your fiddle . . .
   •→ “What can a young lassie do wi’ an auld man?”
♦  Madelaine Cave  ↓  ‘The Silver Tassie’

Go fetch to me a pint o wine, and fill it in a silver tassie;

That I may drink, before I go, a service to my bonie lassie:

The boat rocks at the Pier o’ Leith, Fu’ loud the wind blaws frae the Ferry,

The ship rides by the Berwick-law, and I maun leave my bony Mary.

The trumpets sound, the banners fly, the glittering spears are ranked ready,

The shouts o’ war are heard afar, the battle closes deep and bloody.

It’s not the roar o’ sea or shore, wad make me langer wish to tarry;

Nor shouts o’ war that’s heard afar- It’s leaving thee, my bony Mary!

•→ Wendy Weatherby ⇔ “Cock Up Your Beaver” ⇐
◊→  ‘Ye Jacobites by name’  ⇓

A traditional Scottish folk song which goes back to the Jacobite Risings in Scotland (1688–1746). While the original version simply attacked the Jacobites from a contemporaneous Whig point of view, Robert Burns rewrote it in around 1791 to give a version with a more general, humanist anti-war outlook: the version that most people know today.

Ye Jacobites by name, lend an ear, lend an ear,
Ye Jacobites by name, lend an ear,
Ye Jacobites by name, Your fautes I will proclaim,
Your doctrines I maun blame, you shall hear – you shall hear . . .
 
What is Right, and What is Wrang, by the law, by the law?
What is Right and what is Wrang by the law?
What is Right, and what is Wrang?
A short sword, and a lang,
A weak arm and a strang,  for to draw. . .
Ye Jacobites by name, lend an ear, lend an ear . . .
 
What makes heroic strife, famed afar, famed afar?
What makes heroic strife famed afar?
What makes heroic strife?
To whet th’ assassin’s knife,
Or haunt a Parent’s life, wi’ bluidy war?
Ye Jacobites by name, lend an ear, lend an ear . . .
 
Then let your schemes alone, in the state, in the state,
Then let your schemes alone in the state.
So let your schemes alone,
Adore the rising sun,
And leave a man undone, to his fate. . . 
•→ “Address to a Haggis”  Φ video
∞  Two songs   ⇓

‘O,leeze me on my spinnin-wheel’ (Katrine Polwart) & ‘Ah Chloris’ (Tich Frier)

1.   O, leeze me on my spinnin-wheel!
And leeze me on my rock and reel,
Frae tap to tae that cleeds me bien,
And haps me fiel and warm at e’en! 
I’ll set me down, and sing and spin,
While laigh descends the summer sun,
Blest wi’ content, and milk and meal –
O, leeze me on my spinnin-wheel!
 
2.   On ilka hand the burnies trot,
And meet below my theekit cot,
The scented birk and hawthorn white
Across the pool their arms unite,
Alike to screen the birdie’s nest
And little fishes’ caller rest.
The sun blinks kindly in the biel,
Where blythe I turn my spinnin-wheel.
 
3.   On lofty aiks the cushats wail,
And Echo cons the doolfu’ tale.
The lintwhites in the hazel braes,
Delighted, rival ither’s lays.
The craik amang the claver hay,
The paitrick whirrin o’er the ley,
The swallow jinkin round my shiel,
Amuse me at my spinnin-wheel. 
 
4.  Wi’ sma’ to sell and less to buy,
Aboon distress, below envy,
O, wha wad leave this humble state
For a’ the pride of a’ the great?
Amid their flaring, idle toys,
Amid their cumbrous, dinsome joys,
Can they the peace and pleasure feel
Of Bessy at her spinnin-wheel?

¶  Esteem For Chloris

Ah, Chloris, since it may not be, that thou of love wilt hear;
If from the lover thou maun flee, yet let the friend be dear.
Altho’ I love my Chloris, mair than ever tongue could tell;
  
My passion I will ne’er declare I’ll say, I wish thee well.
Tho’ a’ my daily care thou art, and a’ my nightly dream,
I’ll hide the struggle in my heart, and say it is esteem.
♥  “My heart’s in the Highlands”  ↓  [Music: Michael Sundell]

Farewell to the Highlands, farewell to the North,
The birth-place of Valour, the country of Worth;
Wherever I wander, wherever I rove,
The hills of the Highlands for ever I love.
 
My heart’s in the Highlands, my heart is not here;
My heart’s in the Highlands a-chasing the deer;
A-chasing the wild-deer, and following the roe,
My heart’s in the Highlands wherever I go.
 
Farewell to the mountains high covered with snow;
Farewell to the straths and green valleys below;
Farewell to the forests and wild-hanging woods;
Farewell to the torrents and loud-pouring floods.
 
My heart’s in the Highlands, my heart is not here . . .
 

Candace Cambden & Ringo Dolenz ↓ MacPherson’s Rant’←[The Corries]

(aka “Macpherson’s Farewell” or “Macpherson’s Lament“) James MacPherson (1675-1700) was a Scottish outlaw, famed for his Lament or Rant, a version of which was rewritten by Robert Burns. The original version of the lament is alleged to have been written by MacPherson himself in prison on the eve of his execution.

Farewell ye dungeons dark and strong, the wretch’s destiny
MacPherson’s time will not be long on yonder gallows tree

Oh what is death, but parting breath on mony a bloody plain
I’ve daur’d his face, and in his place I scorn him yet again

Sae rantinly, sae wantonly, sae dauntin’ly gaed he
He played a tune and he danced it roon’ below the gallows tree

Untie these bands from off my hands, bring to me my sword,
There’s no’ a man in all Scotland,  I’ll brave him at a word .

Sae rantinly, sae wantonly, sae dauntin’ly gaed he
He played a tune and he danced it roon’ below the gallows tree …
 
I have lived a life, o’ straught and strife, I die by treachery
It burns my heart, that I must depart an not avenged be
 
Sae rantinly, sae wantonly, sae dauntin’ly gaed he
He played a tune and he danced it roon’ below the gallows tree …
 
Now farewell light thou sunshine bright and all beneath the sky
May coward shame distain his name, The wretch that dare not die
 
Sae rantinly, sae wantonly, sae dauntin’ly gaed he
He played a tune and he danced it roon’ below the gallows tree …
Θ→Scots Wha Hae ↓

‘Scots, wha hae wi Wallace bled, Scots, wham has aften led,

Welcome tae yer gory bed, Or tae victorie.

‘Now’s the day, an now’s the hour: See the front o battle lour,

See approach proud Edward’s power – Chains and Slavery.

‘Wha will be a traitor knave? Wha can fill a coward’s grave?

Wha sae base as be a slave? Let him turn an flee.

‘Wha, for Scotland’s king and law, Freedom’s sword will strongly draw,

Freeman stand, or Freeman fa, Let him on wi me.

‘By Oppression’s woes and pains, By your sons in servile chains!

We will drain our dearest veins, But they shall be free.

‘Lay the proud usurpers low, Tyrants fall in every foe,

Liberty’s in every blow!  Let us do or dee.

Θ  ‘Auld Lang Syne’ ↓ by Robert Burns

A Scottish poem written by Robert Burns in 1788 and set to the tune of a traditional folk song (Roud # 6294). It is well known in many English-speaking countries and is often sung to celebrate the start of the new year at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Day. The song’s (Scots) title may be translated into English literally as “old long since”, or more idiomatically, “long long ago” or “days gone by”. Photographs taken in the last few days of 2008. The moon at the end of the fim was the last moonlight before we entered 2009. This year marks the 250th year since the birth of Robert Burns.

Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and auld lang syne?

For auld lang syne, my dear,  For auld lang syne,
We’ll tak a cup of kindness yet,  For auld lang syne!

And surely ye’ll be your pint-stowp, And surely I’ll be mine,
And we’ll tak a cup o kindness yet, For auld lang syne!

We twa hae run about the braes, And pou’d the gowans fine,
But we’ve wander’d monie a weary fit, Sin auld lang syne.

We twa hae paidl’d in the burn Frae morning sun till dine,
But seas between us braid hae roar’d Sin auld lang syne.

And there’s a hand my trusty fiere, And gie’s a hand o thine,
And we’ll tak a right guid-willie waught, For auld lang syne

• Meanings –  auld lang syne  [times gone by]

be – pay for;  braes – hills;  braid – broad;  burn – stream;  dine – dinner time;  fiere – friend; fit – foot;       gowans – daisies;      guid-willie waught – goodwill drink;     monie – many; morning sun – noon;   paidl’t – paddled;   pint-stowp – pint tankard;  pou’d – pulled;  twa – two

♦ Lorna McLaughlin ↓ ‘The Parting Glass’

Of all the money that e’er I had, I spent it in good company.

And all the harm I’ve ever done, alas it was to none but me.

And all I’ve done for want of wit to mem’ry now I can’t recall;

So fill to me the parting glass – Good night and joy be with you.

Of all the comrades that e’er I had, they’re sorry for my going away.

And all my sweethearts that e’er I had, they’d wish me one more day to stay.

But since it fell unto my lot that I should rise and you should not,

I gently rise and softly call – Good night and joy be with you.

 •→by Ed Sheeran←  /  •→by Cara Dillon

♦  Runrig ↓ ‘(The Bonnie Banks o’) Loch Lomond‘←

•→http://www.folkworld.de/38/e/burns.html

¤  Tam o’ Shanter

TOS

¤  The Tam o’ Shanter Overture, Op. 51 by Malcolm Arnold was completed in March 1955. It is a piece of programme music based on the famous →epic poem by Robert Burns← [original & translation]

In the 19th century, Burn’s poem also gave name to  the traditional Scottish bonnet worn by men [often abbreviated,  TOS or Tam]

• Get to know the legend of Tam O’Shanter ↔

◊  Malcolm Arnold’s Tam O’Shanter Overture  ↓  Op 51

tamoshanter

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