Scottish Poetry Selection
- A Kitchen Lecture

This poem by Charles Nicol describes the (familiar) tale of the drunken husband coming home after an evening of carousing with his friends and being lectured by his long-suffering wife. Suitably chastened, the husband promises (not for the first time - and probably not the last time, either) to reform!

   A Kitchen Lecture

Eh, losh preserve us a'! what's wrang?
   Whaur hae ye been this nicht, Johnnie?
Awa' I've nae doot, wi' that gang
   Wha made ye leave a faithfu' cronie.
But, by my certies, you will yet
   Live to rue sic a carry-on;
Sic wark as this I'll no forget,
   An' that as sure as your name's John.

Ye guid-for-naething senseless fule,
   Come tell me quick whaur ye hae been;
Noo mind yersel'-don't coup the stool-
   Losh me! yer like I've never seen.
You've been wi' Tam M'Luckie, hae ye?
   He's a fine ane to ca' a mate;
Aweel, aweel, guid forgi'e ye,
   An' that's whaur ye hae been sae late?

Haud aff o' that, ye drucken loon;
   Ye're getting jist a fair disgrace;
You'll be the talk o' a' the toon,
   If ye keep gaun at sic a pace.
You'll be the death o' me ye will,
   An' o' my puir negleckit weans;
I'm shair o' grief I've got my fill,
   An' that's a' I get for my pains.

You'll be a better man, you say;
   Aweel, aweel, John, time will tell;
If ye reform noo frae this day,
   'Twill be a bliss for me an' yersel'.
But ye hae promised oft before;
   I trust you'll keep this promise noo;
An' if you never taste drink more,
   A happy hame we'll hae, I voo.

Meaning of unusual words:
losh = Lord
cronie = crony, friend
by my certies = take my word for it
sic = such
Sic wark = such work
coup = knock over
ye drucken loon = you drunken fellow

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