Scottish Poetry Selection
- A Stey Brae

Here is a poem by Gordon Geddes which on the surface is about a "stey brae (a steep hill) but which perhaps also gives some sound advice about life in the same mould as Harry Lauder's "Keep right on to the end of the road".

A Stey Brae

It's a stey brae we're treadin', sae lang an' sae sair
The speelin' o't's hard wi' sich burdens tae bear,
An' snell are the winds that continually blaw -
Oh! little's the sunshine and muckle's the snaw.

The road my be hard and thin be yer shoon,
The keen frost may nip through yer auld worn goun;
You may be near drappin' an' at yer wits end
Tae mak' a' ends meet wi' sae little tae spend.
But dinna gie up though moist be yer broo;
There's mony a ane mair forfoughten than you.

Keep yer een aff the brae, there's nae muckle there
Tae comfort a body o'er burdened wi' care.
The sun an' the rain dinna come frae the groun';
Let yer een an' yer he'rt take a flicht up abune.
Then ye winna gie up, for yer strength He'll renew,
Like mony a ane mair forfoughten than you.

On the brae ye'll find mony wha's life's on the rack;
Try an' gie them a smile an' a friendly bit crack.
There's an end tae a'thing, aye een a stey brae;
But e'en when ye've speel'd it, there's plenty tae dae.
Sae dinna gie up, but just buckle to.
An' help some puir body mair forfoughten than you.

Meaning of unusual words:
stey brae=steep hill
muckle=a lot

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