Scottish Poetry Selection
- Burns' Centenary

Like many other artists who believed that fame would come their way after their death, Burns pronounced in 1796 "I'll be more respected a hundred years after I'm dead than I am at present." One hundred years after the death of Scotland's bard, Charles Murray wrote this poem - confirming the prophecy.

   Burns' Centenary

My fame is sure; when I am dead
A century," the Poet said,
"They'll heap the honours on my head
      They grudge me noo";
To-day the hundred years have sped
      That prove it true.

Whiles as the feather'd ages flee,
Time sets the sand-glass on his knee,
An' ilka name baith great an' wee
      Shak's thro' his seive;
Syne sadly wags his pow to see
      The few that live.

An' still the quickest o' the lot
Is his wha made the lovely cot
A shrine, whaur ilka reverent Scot
      Bareheadit' turns.
Our mither's psalms we may forgot,
      But never Burns.

This nicht, auld Scotland, dry your tears,
An' let nae sough o' grief come near's;
We'll speak o' Rab's gin he could hear's;
      Life's but a fivver,
And he's been healed this hundred years
      To live for ever.

Meaning of unusual words:
ilka = every
baith = both
Syne = soon
pow = head
cot = cottage
gin = if
fivver = fever

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