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The Poems and Songs of Robert Burns with a Life of the Author
Containing a Variety of Particulars, drawn from sources inaccessible by former Biographers to which is subjoined an Appendix of a Panegyrical Ode, and a demonstration of Burns' Superiority to every other poet as a writer of Songs, by Rev. Hamilton Paul, Minister of Broughton, Glenholm & Kilbuch (1819)


The Rev. Paul is know to have started the tradition of the Burns Supper.

INTRODUCTORY ODE
BY THE REV. H. PAUL, 1819.

Not with more joy the cottage fair,
Whose bosom love refines,
The flow’ry garland for her hair
With rosy finger twines,
Than I, this hawthorn shade beneath,
Whose blossoms bend the bough,
While fragrant zephyrs round me breathe,
Inweave the panegyric wreath
To deck the Poet’s brow.

Not with more joy the faithful youth
Folds in his bridal arms
The fair, who, to his plighted truth,
Resigns her blooming charms,
Than I, at rise or fall of day,
Clasp to my breast, by turns,
The volumes, which embrace the lay
Of lorn love, or effusion gay,
Breath’d from the soul of Burns.

Then come, ye lovely virgin throng,
That grace the banks of Ayr,
Or roam Doon’s bonnie braes among,
While Nature’s face is fair;
Come, and Pll lead you to the vale,
Where flowers perennial spring,
And perfumes sweeter far exhale,
Than those which the Sabean gale,
Bears on his balmy wing—

Nor you, with many a furrow’d line,
Whose cheeks are wrinkled o’er,
Forget how once at beauty’s shrine
Ye gloried to adore;
But oft revolve the moral page,
Which eild and poortith mourns;
Or listen to the counsels sage,
Or tales to soothe the woes of age,
Penn’d by the hand of Burns.

Your sense and lair I envy not,
Whose upcast jaundic’d eye
Perceives an universal blot
In our poetic sky;
Your blood is cold, your pulse is still,
Your stream of life scarce flows,
But stagnates like a frozen rill,
Of Love the pure, the tender thrill,
Your bosom never knows.

You seem to think, a lengthen’d face,
Whence every smile is driven,
Will rank you on the lists of Grace,
As Denizens of Heaven;
Can peace within his bosom dwell
Who taste and feeling spurns?
No—’tis the residence of Hell,
Whose gloom defies th’ united spell
Of Music, Song, and Burns.

Illustrious Shades, if from the skies
You still can bend an ear,
Your friends’ regrets, their tears and sighs,
You will delighted hear;
Oft! when you linger’d here below,
We spent the social hour,
And while we felt the genial glow,
Bade for his fate our sorrows flow,
Within his native Bower:

And you, who in the vale of years
Are to our wishes left,
Of you—say our foreboding fears,
We soon will be bereft;
I’ve pour’d the melancholy strain
O’er many timeless urns,
But oh ! comparisons are vain,
For all the pleasure and the pain
Are swallow’d up in Burns.

Download the book "The Poems and Songs of Robert Burns" here


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