Verse > Anthologies > T. H. Ward, ed. > The English Poets > Vol. III. Addison to Blake
Thomas Humphry Ward, ed.  The English Poets.  1880–1918.
Vol. III. The Eighteenth Century: Addison to Blake
Last May a Braw Wooer
By Robert Burns (1759–1796)
TUNE—‘The Lothian Lassie.’

LAST May a braw wooer cam down the lang glen,
  And sair wi’ his love he did deave me;
I said there was naething I hated like men,
  The deuce gae wi’m to believe me, believe me,
  The deuce gae wi’m to believe me.        5
He spak o’ the darts in my bonie black een,
  And vowed for my love he was diein;
I said he might die when he liket for Jean:
  The Lord forgie me for liein, for liein,
  The Lord forgie me for liein.        10
A weel-stocked mailen, 1 himsel for the laird,
  And marriage aff-hand, were his proffers:
I never loot on 2 that I kenned it, or cared;
  But thought I might hae waur 3 offers, waur offers,
  But thought I might hae waur offers.        15
But what wad ye think? in a fortnight or less,
  The deil tak his taste to gae near her!
He up the lang loan 4 to my black cousin Bess,
  Guess ye how, the jad! I could bear her, could bear her,
  Guess ye how, the jad! I could bear her.        20
But a’ the neist week as I fretted wi’ care,
  I gaed to the tryste 5 o’ Dalgarnock,
And wha but my fine fickle lover was there!
  I glowred as I ’d seen a warlock, a warlock,
  I glowred as I ’d seen a warlock.        25
But owre my left shouther I gae him a blink,
  Lest neibors might say I was saucy;
My wooer he capered as he ’d been in drink,
  And vowed I was his dear lassie, dear lassie,
  And vowed I was his dear lassie.        30
I spier’d 6 for my cousin fu’ couthy 7 and sweet,
  Gin she had recovered her hearin,
And how her new shoon fit her auld shachl’t 8 feet—
  But Heavens! how he fell a swearin, a swearin,
  But Heavens! how he fell a swearin.        35
He begged, for Gudesake, I wad be his wife,
  Or else I wad kill him wi’ sorrow:
So e’en to preserve the poor body in life,
  I think I maun wed him to-morrow, to-morrow,
  I think I maun wed him to-morrow.        40
Note 1. farm. [back]
Note 2. let out. [back]
Note 3. worse, [back]
Note 4. green lane, the same word as loaning. [back]
Note 5. market. [back]
Note 6. asked. [back]
Note 7. kind. [back]
Note 8. twisted. [back]

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