Poetry and Prose Quotes
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A Taste of the Scots Language from the 13th Century to Present Day
Chairlie is her darlin son
Bit he is nae Prince o mine.
He'll nivver rule ma native lan
Tho he leives ti be nintie-nine!
An additional verse for
Thurso Berwick's 'Coronation Coronach'
- Peter D Wright
See the words for the song in 'The Rebel Ceilidh Song Book' in Features.
Chairlie's up at Cambridge noo
A' the girls are tryin' their best
Bit, juist for spite, he holds on ticht
Tae his breeks an' Royal crest.
Writing in 'Chapbook' ( volume
4, number 6, 1968) Thurso Berwick notes 'This original text ( see Features
for words of 'Coronach Coronach' in 'The Rebel Ceilidh Song Book' ) has
since been transmuted to fit in with later events and developments and
various singers have added their own verses. A recent example of this
'folk process' at work is a verse added by the Corries.'
sirs! but I'm wabbit, I'm back frae the toon;
I ha'ena dune pechin' - jist let me sit doon.
I'm for nae mair o Glesca, an' that's shair as
But ye'll hear a' ma crack when I've gotten ma
Eh, man, I'm forfochen! Is't drouthy I look?
Aye, weel could I dae wi a waucht o' soor-dook.
Dod aye! I'm fair dunner't, an' think it nae
It's an awfu' place, Glesca; I'm gled tae get hame.
1.On that vera day gaed
Jesus oot o' the hoose, and sat doon by the side o' the Loch.
2. And great gaitherins o'
folk cam thegither till him, sae that he gaed intil a boat, and sat doon ;
and the hail o' the folk stude on the shore.
3. And he spak mony things
to them on parables ; and quo' he : " Tak tent : The sawer gaed oot to saw
4. " And in his sawin, a
neiffu' was mis-cuisten on the fit-road, and eaten up wi' the birdies.
5. " Some fell on the
stanerie bits, whaur the yirth was jimp ; and it brairdit bonnie, for the
mool was thin.
6. " And whan the sun
raise heigh, it birsl't up : and, for that it had nae rute, it dwined awa.
7. " And some fell whaur
thorns had been ; and up cam the thorns, and smoored it.
8. " And some fell on the
gude grun', and brocht forth frute - this a hunner, that saxty, and the
9. " Wha has lugs for
hearin, lat him hear ! "
that cauldrife Winter's here
There's a pig in ilka bed,
Kindlin's scarce an' coals is dear;
Noo that cauldrife Winter's here
Doddy mittens we maun wear,
Butter skites an' winna spread;
Noo that cauldrife Winter's here
There's a pig in ilka bed.
aipple, a neep an' an ingin
Wis a sang Harry Gordon's aye singing,
Noo a neep canna steep in the toffee sae sweet
Nor an ingin that when skinnin maks a'body greet
But o' a' Nature's fruits, an aipple best suits
Tae be dressed like a wee candy toff.
Sae dinna delay, but get some today,
An' get them afore they gang off.
Upon ane tyme, as Esope
Ane lytill Mous came
till a rever syde
Scho micht not waid, her
schankis wer so schort
Scho culd not swym, scho
had na hors to ryd,
Of verray force behovit
her to byde
And to and fro besyde
that rever deip
Scho ran, cryand with
many pietuous peip.
might gie a skreed o' names,
Dawties of Heliconian dames!
The foremost place Gawin Douglas claims,
That canty priest ;
And wha can match the fifth King James
For sang or jest!
Montgomery grave, and Ramsay gay,
Dunbar, Scot, Hawthornden, and mae
Than I can tell ; for o' my fae,
I maun break aff ;
'Twould take a live lang simmer day
To name the haff.
The nicht is Halloween,
The morn is Hallowmas
And gin ye daur your
true luve win,
Ye hae nae time to stay.
The nicht is gude Halloween,
When faerie folk will
And they that wad their
true love win
At Miles Cross they maun
- a traditional ballad
1. Noo, eftir he had endit
a' his teachin i' the hearin o' the thrang, he gaed intil Capernaum.
2. And a Centurion's
servin-man, wha was unco thocht o' by him, was ill, and ready to dee.
3. But, hearing aboot
Jesus, he sent till him Elders o' the Jews, wha besocht him that he
wad come and save his servin-man.
4. And whan they cam to
Jesus, he besocht him sair, sayin, " He is wordie to wham ye wad grant
5. " For he lo'es oor
nation, and has biggit us a kirk ! "
6. And Jesus was gaun wi'
them. By this time he, no bein far frae the hoose, the Centurion sent
freends till him, sayin, " Lord, dinna fash yersel ; for I am-na wordie ye
soud come under my roof.
7. " And sae naither
thocht I mysel wordie to come till ye ; but speak wi' a word, and my
servin-lad sal be hale.
For e'en I mysel am ane set under authoritie, and haein under me sodgers ;
and I say till ane, ' Gang,' and he gangs ; and till anither, ' Come.' and
he comes ; and to my servin-lad, ' Do this,' and he dis it. "
9. And whan Jesus heard
thae words, he ferlied at him ; and turnin to the thrang that follow't
him, said, " I say t'ye, I hae-na fund sic leal faith, na, no in Isra'l !
10. And they that war
sent, returnin to the hoose, faund the servin-lad weel.
Scots is naither slang nor
"bad English" tho it is aften thocht tae be, even by them that speaks it.
Sic notions in pairt are doun tae a miskennin o its status an history. In
spite of its lang pedigree, Scots hasna been accordit a richt recognition
o its worth since the Scottish Coort gaed sooth in 1603, faur less since
the Union o Pairliaments in 1707. Ower the years, ither pressures, tae,
like the uis o an English an no a Scots translation o the Bible, had a gey
Caulder the air becomes, and snell the wind,
The waters, splairgin as she dunts her boo,
Blads in the blatter o hailstanes on the brig
And geals on guns and turrets, masts and spars,
Cleedin the iron and stell wi coat o ice.
your pins in temper fix,
And roset weel your fiddle-sticks;
But banish vile Italian tricks
Frae out your quorum
Nor fortes wi pianos mix -
Gie's Tulloch Gorum.
heid did yak yester nicht,
This day to mak that I nae micht,
So sair the magryme dois me menyie,
Peirsing my brow as ony ganyie,
That scant I look may on the licht.
was a wee bit mousikie,
That lived in Gilberaty-O,
It couldno' get a bite o' cheese,
For cheatie pussy-catty-O.
said unto the cheeseky,
'Oh fain would I be at ye-O,
If 'twere no' for the cruel claws
O' cheatie pussy-catty-O.'
fient a bit o' lear hae I,
It beats me hoo X equals Y,
An' nine times nine hooe'er I try
I canna mind ava, sir.
But I ken whaur the yorline biggs,
An' peewits lay atween the rigs,
An' whaur the brock his burrow digs,
An' moudiewarps an' a', sir.
winds off BEN-LOMOND blaw,
And bar the doors wi' driving snaw,
And hing us owre the ingle,
I set me down, to pass the time,
And spin a verse or twa o' rhyme,
In hamely, westlin jingle.
While frosty winds blaw in the drift,
Ben to the chimla lug,
I grudge a wee the Great-folk's gift,
That live sae bien an' snug :
I tent less, and want less
Their roomy fire-side ;
But hanker, and canker,
To see their cursed pride.
"Did ye notice this week"asked Duffy "that a
fitba' player by the name o' Tom Hamilton at Kilmarnock, has been bocht by
the Preston North End for £4500?"
"I didna notice" replied Erchie. "That's a
terrible lot o' money for a human bein'! I've seen the day ye could get
tip-top fitba' players in the prime of life for five pounds apiece,
delivered at the door for ye."
Yestreen I had a pint
A place where body
saw na ;
Yestreen lay on this
breast o' mine
The gowden locks
of Anna :
The hungry Jew in
Was naething to my
Upon the lips of
19. But Herod deein, look ! an Angel o'
the Lord by dream appears to Joseph in Egypt.
20. And quo' he, " Rise ! tak the wee
bairn and his mither, and journey intil Isra'ls land ; for they that socht
the wee bairn's life are deid. "
21. And he raise, and took till him the
wee bairn and his mither, and cam intil the land o' Isra'l.
22. But whan it was tell't him that
Archelaus rang in Judea in the stead o' Herod his faither. he was fley't
to gang thar ; but, being instruckit in a dream, he gaed intil the pairts
o' Galilee :
23. And cam and dwalt in a citie ca'ed
Nazareth ; that it soud come to pass that was said by the prophet, " He
will be ca'ed a Nazarene. "
Rejoice, ye Burghers, ane
Lang look't for's come
Sair war your backs held
to the wa'
Wi' poortith an' wi'
Now ye may clap your wings
And gayly busk ilk'
For Deacon Cocks hae
pass'd a law
To rax an' weet your
drink thir days.
I've tint my bairnskip
And canna ony mair
Greit mysel asleep.
Bairnskip I've buryit
In the mirk o nichts
And nou, an unseen
It twines me frae
To luve unluvit it is ane
For she that is my
Sum wantoun man so hie
hes set her
That I can get no luve
But brakis my hairt,
and nocht the better.
Wullie, Oor Wullie, he's awa' noo, but havin'
lived he's made Stanehive an' twal-mile roon' a better place, wi' his
sangs, stories , verses an' seldom a frown.
Bein' Auld Toon loons Wullie an' I had a lot
in common an' aften did turns together at the Auld Tin Kirkie at Fiddes,
Kinneff an' Skite Hall. Mony a time I've been doon at Wullie's for a run
ower oor turn for the social, an' there wis aye a wee dram. Ye could aye
sing an' speak better efter that.
In July month, ae
Was spread o'er ilka
rigg o' corn,
To charm our
Glouring about I saw a
The fairest 'neath
Her een ware o' the
Her skin like
white that day.
Where'er ye bide i the
warld sae wide,
We wish ye a a neuk on the
Wi muckle o loe an little
A wee bit pursie wi siller
Yir ain fireside whan day
In a wee bit housie wi
Scots Wish (with thanks to Electric Scotland - quoted in ES
Newsletter 5 March 2004)
Just gie us a griddle, a
guid Culross griddle,
A nievefu o salt and
the side o a burn,
We'll feed like our
fathers that never kent famine,
Wi meal and a griddle
nae Scottie'll mourn !
It's no the day's provand
that maks ye the sodger,
It's milk o your
mither that fills ye wi steel ;
And sae we'll be couthy,
and sae we'll be canty,
As lang's we hae
bannocks o barley meal.
1. And he said to them, " Truly say I
t'ye, thar are some staunin here, wha sal in naegate pree death, till they
hae seen the Kingdom o' God comin in pooer !"
2. And eftir sax days Jesus taks Peter,
and James, and John, and feshes them up intil a heigh mountain, allenarlie
: and he was transformed afore them.
3. And his cleedin becam unco glitterin
white, as white as snaw ; sic as nae wauk-miller on the yirth coud white
4. And Elijah and Moses appear't to them ;
and they spak wi' Jesus.
5. And Peter answerin, says to Jesus, "
Maister, it is bonnie for us to be here ! and lat us mak thrie bothies ;
for thee ane ; and for moses ane ; and for Elijah ane !"
6. For he kent-na what to say ; for they
war sair terrify't.
7. And thar cam a clud ower-shadin them ;
and a voice spak oot o' the clud, " This is my Son ! The Beloved ! Hear ye
till him !"
8. And a o' a suddaintie, lookin roound,
thar was nae ane to be seen, but only Jesus wi' their sels.
9. And as they war comin doon frae the
mountain, he chairged them that they soud tell nae man the things they had
seen, till ance the Son o' Man soud rise frae the deid.
10. And they keepit that sayin amang their
sels, what the " Risin-frae-the-deid " was.
11. And they speir't at him, sayin, " The
Scribes haud that Elijah maun first come !"
12. And he answer't and tauld them, "
Elijah, indeed dis come first, to pit a' things to richts ; and yet hoo is
it written o' the Son o' Man, that he maun dree mony things, and be unco
13. " But I say t'ye. Elijah is come ! and
they hae dune till him whatsae'er they wad, e'en as it is putten doon
concernin him. "
I'm fee'd tae a fermer
I'se warrant we pairt
at the term;
I was ne'er sae
hard-wrocht in ma life:
It's mair like a jile
than a ferm.
The bothy is waur than
The caff bed wi'
loupers is rife;
Ye're no' as weel
hoosed as the kye
When fee'd tae a
fermer in Fife.