Verse > Anthologies > T. R. Smith, ed. > Poetica Erotica: A Collection of Rare and Curious Amatory Verse
T. R. Smith, comp.  Poetica Erotica: Rare and Curious Amatory Verse.  1921–22.
The Lass That Made the Bed for Me
By Robert Burns (1759–1796)
(From Johnson’s Museum, 1796)

WHEN Januar’ wind war blawin’ cauld,
  As to the north I took my way.
The mirksome night did me enfauld,
  I knew not where to lodge till day;
But by good luck a maid I met,        5
  Just in the middle o’ my care,
And kindly she did me invite
  To walk into her chamber fair.
I bowed fu’ low unto this maid,
  And thanked her for her courtsie;        10
I bowed fu’ low unto this maid,
  An’ bade her make a bed to me;
She made the bed baith large and wide,
  Wi’ twa white hands she spread it doun;
She put the cup to her rosy lips,        15
  And drank—“Young man, now sleep ye soun.”
    The bonnie lass made the bed to me,
      The braw lass made the bed to me,
    I’ll ne’er forget till the day I die,
      The lass that made the bed for me.        20
She snatch’d the candle in her hand,
  And frae my chamber went wi’ speed;
But I called her quickly back again,
  To lay some mair below my head;
A cod she laid below my head,        25
  And served me with due respect,
And, to salute her wi’ a kiss,
  I put my arms about her neck.
“Haud off your hands, young man!” she said,
  “And dinna see uncivil be;        30
Gif ye hae any Love for me,
  O wrang na my virginitie.”
Her hair was like the links of gowd,
  Her teeth were like the ivorie,
Her cheeks like lillies dipt in wine,        35
  The lass that made the bed to me.
Her bosom was the driven snaw,
  Twa drifted heaps sae fair to see;
Her limbs the polished marble stane,
  The lass that made the bed to me.        40
I kiss’d her o’er and o’er again,
  And ay she wist na what to say;
I laid her ’tween me and the wa’,
  The lassie thocht na lang till day.
Upon the morrow when we rose,        45
  I thanked her for her courtesie;
But aye she blushed and aye she sigh’d,
  And said, “Alas, ye’ve ruin’d me.”
I clasp’d her waist, and kiss’d her—
  While the tear stood twinkling in her e’e;        50
I said, “My lassie, dinna cry,
  For ye ay shall make the bed for me.”
She took her mither’s holland sheets,
  And made them a’ in sarks to me.
Blythe and merry may she be,        55
  The lass that made the bed to me.

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