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The Laddies by the banks O' Nith


[This short Poem was first published by Robert Chambers. It intimates
pretty strongly, how much the poet disapproved of the change which
came over the Duke of Queensberry's opinions, when he supported the
right of the Prince of Wales to assume the government, without consent
of Parliament, during the king's alarming illness, in 1788.]

The laddies by the banks o' Nith,
Wad trust his Grace wi' a', Jamie,
But he'll sair them, as he sair'd the King,
Turn tail and rin awa', Jamie.

Up and waur them a', Jamie,
Up and waur them a';
The Johnstones hae the guidin' o't,
Ye turncoat Whigs awa'.

The day he stude his country's friend,
Or gied her faes a claw, Jamie:
Or frae puir man a blessin' wan,
That day the Duke ne'er saw, Jamie.

But wha is he, his country's boast?
Like him there is na twa, Jamie,
There's no a callant tents the kye,
But kens o' Westerha', Jamie.

To end the wark here's Whistlebirk,[94]
Lang may his whistle blaw, Jamie;
And Maxwell true o' sterling blue:
And we'll be Johnstones a', Jamie.

FOOTNOTES:

[Footnote 94: Birkwhistle: a Galloway laird, and elector.]


Robert Burns


Poetry