Verse > Harvard Classics > Robert Burns > Poems and Songs
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Robert Burns (1759–1796).  Poems and Songs.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
 
147. Address to a Haggis
 
 
FAIR fa’ your honest, sonsie face,
Great chieftain o’ the pudding-race!
Aboon them a’ ye tak your place,
                    Painch, tripe, or thairm:
Weel are ye wordy o’a grace        5
                    As lang’s my arm.
 
The groaning trencher there ye fill,
Your hurdies like a distant hill,
Your pin was help to mend a mill
                    In time o’need,        10
While thro’ your pores the dews distil
                    Like amber bead.
 
His knife see rustic Labour dight,
An’ cut you up wi’ ready sleight,
Trenching your gushing entrails bright,        15
                    Like ony ditch;
And then, O what a glorious sight,
                    Warm-reekin’, rich!
 
Then, horn for horn, they stretch an’ strive:
Deil tak the hindmost! on they drive,        20
Till a’ their weel-swall’d kytes belyve
                    Are bent like drums;
Then auld Guidman, maist like to rive,
                    Bethankit! hums.
 
Is there that owre his French ragout        25
Or olio that wad staw a sow,
Or fricassee wad make her spew
                    Wi’ perfect sconner,
Looks down wi’ sneering, scornfu’ view
                    On sic a dinner?        30
 
Poor devil! see him owre his trash,
As feckles as wither’d rash,
His spindle shank, a guid whip-lash;
                    His nieve a nit;
Thro’ blody flood or field to dash,        35
                    O how unfit!
 
But mark the Rustic, haggis-fed,
The trembling earth resounds his tread.
Clap in his walie nieve a blade,
                    He’ll mak it whissle;        40
An’ legs an’ arms, an’ hands will sned,
                    Like taps o’ trissle.
 
Ye Pow’rs, wha mak mankind your care,
And dish them out their bill o’ fare,
Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware        45
                    That jaups in luggies;
But, if ye wish her gratefu’ prayer
                    Gie her a haggis!
 

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