Page images
PDF
EPUB

Bot of that sort quhilk I report

I knaw nane in this ring;
Bot we may all baith grit and small,

Glaidly baith dance and sing.
Quha list nocht heir to mak gude cheir,
Perchance his gudes ane uthir yeir
Be spent, quhen he is brocht to beir,

Quhen his wyfe taks the fling.
It has bene sene that wyse wemen,

Eftir thair husband's deid,
Hes gotten men hes gart them ken

Gif thay micht beir grit laid.
With ane grene sting hes gart them bring
The geir quhilk won wes be ane dring;
And syne gart all the bairnis sing

Ramukloch in thair bed.

Than wad scho say, Alace ! this day

For him that wan this geir : Quhen I him had I skairsly said,

My hairt anis mak gud cheir. Or I had lettin him spend a plak, I lever haif wittin him brokin his bak; Or ellis his craig had gottin a crak

Our the heicht of the stair. Ye neigartis then example tak, And leir to spend your

awin :
And with gud freynds ay mirry mak,

That it may be weil knawin
That thou art he quha wan this geir ;
And for thy wyfe se thou not spair
With gud freynds ay to mak repair,

Thy honesty may be shawin.
Finis, quoth 1, quha settis nocht by

The ill wyfis of this toun;
Thoch for despyt with me wald flyte

Gif thay micht put me down.

Gif ye wald know quha maid this sang
Qubidder ye will him heid or hang,
Flemyng's his name quhair evir he gang,

In place, or in quhat toun.

This, and the following Ballad, seem to be of one age, and very much of one spirit; but whether they are the production of the same writer, or not, I have been unable to discover. The writer, by engrossing his name in his “ Ballat,” has taken care that it shall be as lasting as his work, but there is nothing known concerning him, further, than that he lived some time in the 16th century. It may not be improper to notice, for the sake of any luckless individual who may have caught a Tartar, or termagant, no uncommon thing in the lottery of matrimony, that the green sting, or goad, spoken of in the Ballad, is, in the hand of the husband, according to the law of Scotland, a perfectly legal instrument of correction, provided it be not thicker than his thumb.

BALLAT OF GUDE FALLOWIS.

I mar it kend he that will spend,

And luve God lait and air,
God will him mend, and grace him send,

Quhen catyvis sall haif cair.
Thairfoir pretend weill for to spend

Of geir, and nocht till spair :
I knaw the end that all mon wend

Away nakit and bair.
With an O, and an I,

Ane wrech sall haif na mair,
Bot ane schort scheit at heid and feit,

For all his wrek and wair.

For all the wrak a wrech can pak,

And in his baggis imbrace,
Yet deid sall tak him be the bak,

And gar him cry, Allace!
Than sall he swak away with lak

And wat nocht to quhat place;
Than will thay mak at him a knak

That maist of his gud hais.

With an O, and an I,
Quhyle we have

tyme and space, Mak we gud cheir quhyle we are heir,

And thank God of his grace. Were thair ane king to rax and ring

Amang gude fallowis cround,
Wrechis wald ring, and mak murnyng,

For dule thay sald be dround.
Quha finds ane dring, owder auld or ying,

Gar hoy him out and hound:
Now lat us sing with Chrystis blissing,

Be glaid, and mak gude sound.
With an 0, and an I,

Now or we furder found :
Drink thow to me, and I to the

And let the cop go round.
Quha undirstude suld haif his gude

Or he were clos'd in clay,
Sum in thair mude they wald go wude,

And de lang or thair day.
Nocht worthe ane hude, or an auld snude,

Thou sall beir hyne away,
Wrech, be the rude, for, to conclude,

Full few will for the pray.
With an O, and an I,

Gude fallowis, quhill we may,
Be mirry and fre, syne blyth we be,

And sing on tway and tway.

CHILD MAURICE.
Child MAURICE was an erle's son,

His name it waxed wide;
It was nae for his great riches,

Nor yit his meikle pride,
But it was for his mother gay

Wha liv'd on Carron side.

[ocr errors]

Whar sall I get a bonny boy,

“That will win hose and shoen, "That will gae to lord Barnard's ha',

. And bid his lady come?

ye

And ye maun rin ane errand Willie,

And maun rin wi' speid; • When ither boys gang on their feet

• Ye sall ha prancing steid.' “ Oh no! oh no! my master deir !

“ I dar na for my life; “ I'll no gae to the bauld baron's,

« For to triest furth his wife."

My bird Willie, my boy Willie,

My deir Willie," he said, • How can ye strive against the streim?

* For I sall be obey'd.' “ But O my master deir !” he cry'd,

“ In grenewode ye're your lane; « Gi owr sic thochts I wald ye red,

“ For feir ye sold be tane."

Haste, haste, I say, gae to the ha,

• Bid her come here wi' speid; * If ye refuse my hie command,

! I'll gar your body bleid. • Gae bid her tak this gay mantel,

' 'Tis a gowd but the hem: • Bid her come to the gude grenewode,

Ein by hersel alane:

[ocr errors]

• And there it is, a silken sarke,

• Her ain hand sew'd the sleeve; • And bid her come to Child Maurice;

Speir nae bauld baron's leive.'

« Yes I will gae your black errands

“ Thouch it be to your cost; “ Sen ye will nae be warn’d by me,

“ In it ye sall find frost.
“ The baron he's a man o'micht,

“ He neir cold bide to taunt:
And will see before its nicht,

“ Sma cause ye ha to vaunt.
“ And sen I maun your errand rin

“ Sae sair against my will, “ I'se mak a vow and keip it trow,

« It sall be done for ill."

ye

When he cam to the broken brig,

He bent his bow and swam;
And whan he cam to grass growing,

Set down his feet and ran.

And whan he cam to Barnard's yeat

Wold neither chap nor ca,
But set his bent bow to his breist,

And lichtly lap the wa'.
He wald na tell the man his errand

Thoch he stude at the yeat;
But streight into the ha' he cam,

Whar they were set at meat.

• Hail ! bail! my gentle sire and dame!

‘My message winna wait, • Dame ye maun to the grenewode gae,

• Afore that it be late.

• Ye're bidden tak this gay mantel,

" 'Tis a' gowd bot the hem: • Ye maun haste to the gude grenewode,

• Ein by yoursell alane.

« PreviousContinue »