Monday, January 25, 2021

On Robert Burns Day

Madeleine Kearns, herself a Scot, writes today that some of Scotland's unfortunate past seems to be being replicated. In the process she references a few of Burns' poems. I looked up a few of them online. First from "Address To The Unco Guid," the first and last verses (full poem here):
O YE wha are sae guid yoursel',
Sae pious and sae holy,
Ye've nought to do but mark and tell   
Your neibours' fauts and folly!
Whase life is like a weel-gaun mill,
Supplied wi' store o' water;
The heaped happer's ebbing still,
An' still the clap plays clatter.
Who made the heart, 'tis He alone
Decidedly can try us;
He knows each chord, its various tone,
Each spring, its various bias:
Then at the balance let's be mute,
We never can adjust it;
What's done we partly may compute,
But know not what's resisted.
Kearns also quotes from "To a Louse, On Seeing One on a Lady’s Bonnet at Church":
O wad some Power the giftie gie us
To see oursels as ithers see us!
It wad frae monie a blunder free us
An foolish notion:
What airs in dress an gait wad lea'es us,
An ev'n devotion!
Much more at this site.

Robert Burns’s Antidote for Our Self-Righteous Times

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