Daniel McIntyre Henderson
Oh! Scotland mine, my mother-land,
How grand, how fair art thou !
The sunbeams play about thy feet,
The lightnings round thy brow !
How stout of arm, how fierce of speech,
In battle and in storm !
But to thy children, bosom-nursed,
How tender-souled and warm !
Oh! grand and fair— my mother-land.
What pangs were at thy birth !
With throes and tossings terrible
Travailed thy mother, Earth,
Each jagged cliff, each towering peak,
Still tells of pain and strife.
When thou, from out earth's burning womb,
Wast lifted into life.
My mother-land ! how bare thy form,
How wild thy heart of flame,
Till kindly snows and mists and dews
With gentlest soothing came !
And now, in Nature's greenest robe,
A queen I see thee stand—
The fairest, grandest child of earth.
My own, my mother-land !
Thy children, too, my mother-land.
Came to their birth through strife—
In storm and war and martyr-fires
They bravely won their life—
Rock-framed and rude, how stern they stood
For truth and conscience free !
Fire-souled, how flamed their being forth
For liberty and thee !
Come now soft dews of sympathy !
Come mists of human tears,
And snows that nurse the buried seed
Shall bloom in brighter years !
For greenest sward of love shall fold
Eternal rocks of truth —
And kingly men thy sons shall stand
In royal robes of ruth!
For An Album
Daniel Mcintyre Henderson
I scan the album's written page,
And linger o'er each kindly thought,
But idly turn the snowy blank
That bears no word, that shows no blot.
'Tis well to crowd our lives with work.
Though sometimes failing of success—
The record of earth's dusty strife
Is better then white nothingness.
Fill thou the days with deeds that bless.
With gladdening thoughts and words of cheer,
And in thy life's well-written book,
May neither blot nor blank appear.
JOHN TAMSON'S BAIRNS
Noo here's to you, and you, and you,
Wha speak the Doric tongue;
Frae mony airts, but ane at heart
When Scotland's praise is sung!
What's Tweed or Tay, what's Doon or Don ?
What's Lothians or the Mearns?
The a'e ruiftree owerspans them a' —
We're a' John Tamson's bairns!
Auld Scotland's worthies are her pride;
Sma' wonner gin she craw —
At wark or lear, at war or sang.
Her laddies ding them a' !
The years but brichter mak' their fame
And higher bigg their cairns ;
Wallace and Burns, and a' between —
And a' John Tamson's bairns !
The Scots are scattered far and wide ;
They stand in India's glare,
Canadians snaws, Australia's sands —
A pickle here and there —
Alane in desert spots o' earth,
Or where men pack like herrins,
They dae their wark, they mak' their mark —
They're a' John Tamson's bairns !
The muckle warl' that lies ower seas
Has had oor kintra's best —
Her Moffats, Duffs and Livingstones,
Her Chalmers and the rest ;
Baith hoo to mak' and hoo to gie
She frae Carnegie learns;
And what a gift was Stevenson !
They're a' John Tamson's bairns!
We're brithers a'-- tho' ane's on tap,
And ane speels bit by bit,
And ane has made as brave a fecht
Yet sprachles' at the fit.
What mak's the differ? Wha wad judge?
Whiles health, whiles luck, whiles harns —
But up, or doun, join hands a' roun' —
We're a' John Tamson's bairns !
But wider is oor britherhood
Than race or speech can bind —
A Scot's a Scot, yet kin' is he
To a' o' humankind ;
It's "man to man, the warl' ower,"
And ilka true heart learns
That skin and tongue and creed apart,
We're a' John Tamson's bairns !
Yestreen I met a creatur' as thrawn as ony wuddy,
There was nae single thing that pleased the fykie body!
E'en Scotland wasna' perfect, and what think ye was wrang?
"Owre muckle rain, owre muckle rain"—noo wasna that a sang?
A drap or twa o' watter—what's that to ca' a faut?
The body maun be made, I doot, o' sugar or o' saut!
And what was weetin' rain to him wad be to me or you
Nae mair than just a mornin' mist or fa' o' gloamin' dew.
We've no sae muckle rain—och ay, some orra bits o' show'rs
Tween glints o' sun to fill the burns and freshen up the flow'rs,
And, now and then, a sprinkle that's guid for neeps and heather —
It wad be sinfu' maist to growl at sic grand growin' weather.
Och, whiles we hae a canny seep, and whiles it's saft a wee
But dounricht pour, or blash or blaud ye'll no sae often see —
But, gin it's just a smurr some folk'll girn and grane,
Gin it's nae mair than spittin', they'll cry "owre muckle rain."
There's places that's no fashed wi' rain, there's lands awa' doun
Where no a drap'll fa' for months, and a' things choke wi' drouth —
Nae caller watter loupin' frae the mountain to the plain,
Nae peaceful' tarns, nae lauchin' burns—and a' for want o' rain!
O Scotland's bonnie, bonnie, and gin we loe her smiles
We ken they're a' the sweeter because it rains there—whiles —
And if some fykie body cries out "owre muckle rain,"
We wish nae waur than, may he gang to yon place where there's nane!