To Terraughty, On His Birthday
Health to the Maxwel's veteran chief!
Health, ay unsour'd by care or grief:
Inspir'd, I turn'd fate's sibil leaf,
This natal morn,
I see thy life is stuff o' prief,
Scarce quite half-worn.
This day thou metes threescore eleven,
And I can tell that bounteous heaven
(The second-sight, ye ken, is given
to ilka poet)
On thee a tack o' seven times seven
Will yet bestow it.
If envious buckies view wi' sorrow
Thy lengthen'd days on this blest morrow,
May desolation's lang-teeth'd harrow,
Nine miles an hour,
Rake them like Sodom and Gomorrah,
In brunstane stoure.
But for thy friends, and they are mony,
Baith honest men, and lassies bony,
May couthie fortune, kind and cany,
In social glee,
Wi' mornings blythe, and e'enings funny,
Bless them and thee:
Fareweel, auld birkie! Lord be near ye,
And then the deil he daur na steer ye:
Your friends ay love, your faes ay fear ye!
For me, shame fa' me,
If neist my heart I dinna wear ye,
While Burns they ca' me.