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An' doucely manage our affairs
In parliament, To you à simple poet's prayers
Are humbly sent.
Alas! my roupet Muse is hearse! Your honours' heart wi' grief 'twad pierce, To see her sittin on her a
Low i' the dust, An' scriechin out prosaic verse,
An' like to brust!
Tell them who hae the chief direction,
On aquavitæ ;
An' move their pity.
Stand forth, an' tell yon premier youth,
His servants humble :
If ye dissemble !
Does ony great man glunch an' gloom? Speak out, an never fash your thumb! Let posts an' pensions sink or soom
Wi' them wha grant 'em : If honestly they canna come,
Far better want 'em.
In gath'rin votes you were na slack;
An hum an' haw;
Before them a'.
Paint Scotland greeting owre her thrissle, Her mutchkin stoup as toom's a whissle :
An' d-mn'd excisemen in a bussle,
Seizin a stell, Triumphant crushin't like a mussel
Or lampit shell.
Then on the tither hand present her, A blackguard smuggler right behint her, An' cheek-for-chow, a chuffie vintner,
Colleaguing join, Picking her pouch as bare as winter
of a' kind coin.
Is there, that bears the name o' Scot, But feels his heart's bluid rising hot, To see his poor auld mither's pot
Thus dung in staves, An' plunderd o’ her hindmost groat
By gallows knaves ?
Alas! I'm but a nameless wight,
Or gab like Boswell, There's some sark-necks I wad draw tight,
An' tie some hose well.
God bless your honours, can ye see't,
An' gar them hear it,
Ye winna bear it!
Some of you nicely ken the laws,
To mak harangues ;
Auld Scotland's wrangs.
Dempster, a true blue Scot l'se warran; Thee, aith-detesting, chaste Kilkerran* ; An' that glib-gabbet Highland baron,
The laird o' Grahamt; An' ane, a chap that's d-mn'd auldfarran,
Dundas his name.
Erskine, a spunkie Norland billie; True Campbells, Frederick an' Ilay ; An' Livingstone, the bauld sir Willie ;
An' monie ithers, Whom auld Demosthenes or Tully
Might own for brithers.
Arouse, my boys! exert your mettle,
Ye'll see't or lang,
This while she's been in crankous mood, Her lost militia fir'd her bluid; (Deil na they never mair do guid,
Play'd her that pliskie !) An' now she's like to rin red-wud
About her whisky.
An' L-d, if ance they pit her tillit,
She'll tak the streets,
I th' first she meets !
For G-d sake, sirs ! then speak her fair, An' straik her cannie wi' the hair,
* Sir Adam Ferguson.
An' to the muckle house repair,
Wi' instant speed, An' strive, wi' a' your wit and lear,
To get remead.
Yon ill-tongu'd tinkler, Charlie Fox, May taunt you wi' his jeers an' mocks ; But gie him't het, my hearty cocks !
E'en cowe the caddie ! An' send him to his dicing box
An' sportin lady.
Tell yon guid bluid o' auld Boconnock's
Nine times a-week,
Wad kindly seek.
Could he some commutation broach, I'll pledge my aith in guid braid Scotch, He need na fear their foul reproach
Nor erudition, Yon mixtie-maxtie queer hotch-potch,
Auld Scotland has a raucle tongue;
To tak their part,
She'll no desert.
An' now, ye chosen five-and-forty,
An' kick your place,
Before his face.
* A worthy old hostess of the author's in Mauchline, where he sometimes studies politics over a glass of gude auid Scotch drink.
God bless your honours a' your days,
That haunt St. Jamie's !
While Rab his name is.
Let half-stary'd slaves in warmer skies See future wines, rich clust'ring, rise ; Their lot auld Scotland ne'er envies,
But, blythe and friský, She eyes her freeborn, martial boys
Tak aff their whisky.
What tho' their Phæbus kinder warms, While fragrance blooms and beauty charms! When wretches range, in famish'd swarms,
The scented groves, Or hounded forth, dishonour arms
In hungry droves. .
Their gun's a burden on their shouther;
To stan' or rin,
To save their skin.
But bring a Scotsman frae his hill, Clap in his cheek a Highland gill, Say, such is royal Georgie's will,
An' there's the foe, He has nae thought but how to kill
Twa at a blow,
Nae cauld, faint-hearted doubtings tease him ;
An' when he fa's,
In faint huzzas.