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And surely ye'll be your pint-stoup,
And surely I'll be mine,
For auld langsyne, &c. *
THE BLATHRIE O'T.
* The Editor of the Reliques of Burns says, that the Bard "sometimes wrote poems in the old ballad style, which, for reasons best known to himself, he gave to the world as songs of the olden time. The ballad of Auld Langsyne was introduced in this ambiguous manner, though there exist proofs that the two best stanzas of it are indisputably his.” Whether it is to be presumed from this, that Burns wrote the whole of the song, the Editor of this work shall not determine, as he is not aware of the nature of the proofs alluded to, of Burns having been the writer even of two verses of it. He shall only state what Burns has himself said on the subject, leaving it to his readers to decide the point for themselves. In a letter to Mr. Thompson, inclosing the song, he says, “ One song more and I have done : Auld langsyne. The air is but mediocre; but the following song, the old song of the olden times, and which has never been in print, nor even in manuscript, until I took it down from an old man's singing, is enough to recommend any air.” In a letter to Mrs. Dunlop likewise, with whom he constantly corresponded, and to whom he also communicated the song, he thus writes,---" Is not the Scotch phrase, Auld langsyne, exceedingly expressive. There is an old song and tune which has often thrilled through my soul. You know I am an enthusiast in old Scotch songs: I shall give you the verses on the other sheet.--Light be the turf on the breast of the Heaven-inspired poet who coniposed this glorious fragment! There is more of the fire of native genius in it than half a dozen of modern English
And how the lass that wants it is by the lads forgot,
MY NANIE'S AWA. TUNE-" There'll never be peace till Jamie comes hame.” Now in her green mantle blythe nature arrays, And listens the lambkins that bleat o'er the braes, While birds warble welcome in ilka green shaw; But to me it's delightless—my Nanie's awa. The snaw-drap and primrose our woodlands adorn, And violets bathe in the weet o' the morn; They pain my sad bosom, sae sweetly they blaw, They mind me o' Nanie—and Nanie's awa. Thou lav'rock that springs frae the dews of the lawn, The shepherd to warn o' the grey-breaking dawn, And thou mellow mavis that hails the night fa', Give over for pity-my Nanie's awa.
Come, autumn, sae pensive, in yellow and grey,
ROY'S WIFE OF ALDIVALLOCH.
As I cam o'er the braes of Balloch.
She said she loo'd me best of onie;
Roy's wife, &c.
Weel could she dance the Highland walloch;
Roy's wife, fc.
Her wee bit mou sae sweet and bonnie:
Roy's wife, &c.
THE LASSIE I LOO BEST OF A'. HAE ye seen, in the calm dewy morning,
The red-breast wild warbling sae clear; Or the low-dwelling, snow-breasted gowan,
Surcharg’d wi' mild e’ening's soft tear? 0, then ye hae seen my dear lassie,
The lassie I loo best of a';
But far frae the hame o'
Her eye is the eye o' the dove,
Her bosom's the palace of love.
Thy beauties ne'er charm me ava;
My heart is wi' her that's awa.
The sweetest we mortals here know;
O'ercast with the darkness of wo.
Delights the lone mariner's eye,
And dark billows tumble on high.
CONTENTED WI' LITTLE.
TUNE—“ Lumps o’ Pudding.” CONTENTED wi' little, and cantie wi' mair, Whene'er I forgather wi' sorrow and care, I gie them a skelp, as they're creepin alang, Wi' a cog o' gude swats, and an auld Scottish sang.
* This beautiful song was written by one of the sons of Burns, (the eldest we believe) now residing in London; and, for aught we know, it was his first and only production. It affords a strong proof, however, that the son inherits no small portion of that genius for poetry which raised his father to the first rank among the Bards of his country. We may almost venture to say, that the descriptions contained in it cannot be equalled by any thing in the strains of Ossian, or in the still more luxuriant poetry of the East, to which, indeed, it bears a nearer affinity. Must it not be matter of regret with every lover of Scottish song, that the author of such a piece favours the world with no more of his productions ?
I whyles claw the elbow o' troublesome thought;
This exquisite Bacchanalian piece, by BURNs, was communicated to Mr. THOMPSON for insertion in his work. The following extract, in which the song is spoken of in terms of unqualified approbation, is from a letter written by that gentleman, and will be found, it is hoped, highly interesting.
“ I acknowledge, my dear Sir, you are not only the most punctual, but the most delectable correspondent I ever met with. To attempt flattering you never entered my head : the truth is, I look back with surprise at my impudence, in so frequently nibbling at lines and couplets of your incomparable lyrics, for which, perhaps, if you had served me right, you would have sent me to the devil. On the contrary, however, you have all along condescended to invite my criticism with so much courtesy, that it ceases to be wonderful, if I have sometimes given myself the airs of a reviewer. Your last budget demands unqualified praise. Lumps o’ Pudding shall certainly make one of my family dishes; you have cooked it so capitally, that it will please all palates. Do give us a few more of this cast when you find yourself in good spirits: these convivial songs are more wanted than those of the amorous kind, of which we have great choice. Besides, one does not often meet with a singer capable of giving the proper effect to the latter, while the former are easily sung, and acceptable to every body.”