BURNS’ SEASON: TO A MOUSE

To A Mouse. On turning her up in her Nest with the Plough November 1785 Wee, sleekit, cowrin, tim’rous beastie, O, what a panic’s in thy breastie! Thou need na start awa sae hasty Wi’ bickering brattle! (hasty scurrying) I wad be laith to rin an’ chase thee, (loath) Wi’ murdering pattle! (a wooden plough-scraper)Continue reading “BURNS’ SEASON: TO A MOUSE”

BURNS’ SEASON: “The Rigs o’ Barley”

It was upon a Lammas night, (harvest festival) When corn-rigs are bonie, Beneath the moon’s unclouded light, I held awa’to Annie; The time flew by, wi’ tentless heed (carefree) Till tween the late annd early, Wi’ sma’ persuasion she agreed To see me through the barley. Chorus Corn rigs, an’ barley rigs, An’ corn rigsContinue reading “BURNS’ SEASON: “The Rigs o’ Barley””

BURNS’ SEASON : “Ye Banks and Braes”

Ye banks and braes o’ bonie Doon, How can ye bloom sae fresh and fair; How can ye chant, ye little birds, And I sae weary fu’ o’ care! Thou’ll break my heart thou warbling bird, That wantons thro’ the flowering thorn: Thou minds me o’ departed joys, Departed never to return. Aft hae IContinue reading “BURNS’ SEASON : “Ye Banks and Braes””

A ROBERT BURNS POEM FOR BURNS’ DAY: “TO A LOUSE”

To A Louse On Seeing One on a Lady’s Bonnet at Church. Ye ugly,creepan,blastit wonner (wonder) Detested,shunn’d by saunt an’sinner, (saint) How daur ye set your fit upon her- (dare, foot) Sae fine a Lady! (So) Gae somewhere else and seek your dinner (Go) On some poor body. Swith, in some beggar’s haffet squattle: (Away!hair,squat)Continue reading “A ROBERT BURNS POEM FOR BURNS’ DAY: “TO A LOUSE””

“ONLY A MAN HARROWING CLODS”

IN TIME OF THE BREAKING OF NATIONS Only a man harrowing clods In a slow silent walk With an old horse that stumbles and nods Half-asleep as they stalk. Only thin smoke without flame From the heaps of couch-grass; Yet they will go onward the same Though Dynasties pass. Yonder a maid and her wightContinue reading ““ONLY A MAN HARROWING CLODS””

CHRISTIAN AND PAGAN : ORIGINS OF FOLK-SONG AND DANCE.

Recently we looked at Christmas carols and wassailing songs and their early development from Medieval times. I drew attention to a wassailing song featured on the Waterson’s album “Frost and Fire”(first released 1965) which has a variety of songs associated with different seasons and rituals of the rural year. This album has very interesting notesContinue reading “CHRISTIAN AND PAGAN : ORIGINS OF FOLK-SONG AND DANCE.”

NEW YEAR: LOOKING BACK, LOOKING FORWARD.

As we move from one year to another I wish all followers and occasional readers a happy New Year, secure from the worst that might assail us. I wish to thank you also for your support, as readers from around the world from a variety of cultures. I am delighted you have found in thisContinue reading “NEW YEAR: LOOKING BACK, LOOKING FORWARD.”

JOURNEY OF THE MAGI

(READERS PLEASE NOTE: This blog post with minor revisions is being re-published because of problems with website design issues. I apologise to followers who will receive the same post a second time.) Today is the sixth of January, Epiphany, recognised by Christians as the day of the manifestation of Jesus to the Gentiles. It isContinue reading “JOURNEY OF THE MAGI”

QUOTATIONS FOR REFLECTION

In our age when technology is gaining control over life, when material- well being is considered the most important goal, when the influence of religions have been weakened everywhere in the world, a special responsibility lies upon the writer.” Alexander Solzhenitsyn “If a nation’s literature declines, the nation atrophies and decays.” Ezra Pound