Scottish Poetry Selection
- Wauken Up

This poem by Alexander Anderson describes the difficulty of getting a large family off to school - and how quiet the house becomes without them!

Wauken Up

Wull I hae tae speak again
Tae thae weans o' mine,
Echt o'clock an' weel I ken
The Schule gangs in at nine.
Little hauds me but tae gang
An' fetch the muckle whup,
Oh, ye sleepy-heidit rogues
Wull ye wauken up?

Never mither had sic a faught,
No' a meenit's ease;
Clean Tam as ye like at nicht
His breeks are through his knees.
Thread is nae for him at a'
It niver hauds the grup;
Maun I speak again, ye rogues
Wull ye wauken up?

Tam, the very last to bed,
He winna rise ava',
Last tae get his books an' sklate
Last tae rin awa'.
Sic a loon for tricks an' fun
Heeds na' what I say
Rab an' Jamie-but they plagues,
Wull they sleep a' day?

Here they come, the three at aince,
Lookin' gleg an' fell,
Hoo they ken their bits o' claes
Beats me fair tae tell.
Wash your wee bit faces clean
An' here's your bite an' sup,
Never wis mair wise-like bairns,
Noo they're wauken up.

There the three are aff at last,
I watch them frae the door;
That Tam he's at his tricks again
I count them by the score.
He put his foot afore wee Rab
An' coupit Jamie doon -
Could I but lay my haun's on him,
I'd mak' him claw his croon.

Noo tae get my work on haun'
I'll hae a busy day
But losh! The hoose is unco quate
Since they are a' away.
A dizen times I'll look the clock
Whan it comes roon till three,
For cuddlin' doon or waukenin' up
They're dear, dear bairns tae me.

Meaning of unusual words:
muckle whup=large whip
breeks=trousers (pants in the US)
ava'=at all
sklate=writing slate
gleg an' fell=alert and energetic
coupit=trip up
unco quate=very quiet

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