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The Banks of the Devon

Tune.--"_Bhannerach dhon na chri._"

[These verses were composed on a charming young lady, Charlotte
Hamilton, sister to the poet's friend, Gavin Hamilton of Mauchline,
residing, when the song was written, at Harvieston, on the banks of
the Devon, in the county of Clackmannan.]


How pleasant the banks of the clear winding Devon,
With green spreading bushes, and flowers blooming fair!
But the bonniest flower on the banks of the Devon
Was once a sweet bud on the braes of the Ayr.
Mild be the sun on this sweet blushing flower,
In the gay rosy morn, as it bathes in the dew;
And gentle the fall of the soft vernal shower,
That steals on the evening each leaf to renew.


O spare the dear blossom, ye orient breezes,
With chill hoary wing, as ye usher the dawn;
And far be thou distant, thou reptile that seizes
The verdure and pride of the garden and lawn!
Let Bourbon exult in his gay gilded Lilies,
And England, triumphant, display her proud Rose:
A fairer than either adorns the green valleys,
Where Devon, sweet Devon, meandering flows.

Robert Burns