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Mary Morison
by Robert Burns

Scottish poet and songwriter, Burns is best known today for the latter and, in particular, for his Auld Lang Syne, generally sung in Britain upon the occasion of New Year. This appeared, along with such other lyrics as O My Loves Like a Red, Red Rose, Ye Banks and Braes and Scots wha hac, in the selection of Scottish tunes Burns collected and contributed to: the Select Collection of Original Scottish Airs for the Voice (1793-1818). Other of his songs are also collected in another compendia, The Scots Musical Museum (1787-1803).

As a poet Burns worked with simple concepts, but applied them across a number of forms. He wrote and published satires, scenes of rustic life, epistles to friends, epigrams and nature poems, both in a composite poetic form made up of a number of Scottish dialects and in English. In poems such as The Cotter's Saturday Night and To a Mountain Daisy he uses both Scottish dialect and English together. His poems were published in the Poems Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect (1786).


Mary Morison
by Robert Burns

O Mary, at thy window be,
It is the wished, the trysted hour!
Those smiles and glances let me see,
That make the miser's treasure poor:
How blythely wad I bide the stour,
A weary slave frae sun to sun,
Could I the rich reward secure,
The lovely Mary Morison.

Yestreen, when to the trembling string
The dance gaed thro' the lighted ha',
To thee my fancy took its wing,
I sat, but neither heard nor saw:
Tho' this was fair, and that was braw,
And yon the toast of a' the town,
I sighed, and said amang them a',
"Ye are na Mary Morison."

O Mary, canst thou wreck his peace
Wha for thy sake wad gladly dee?
Or canst thou break that heart of his,
Whose only faut is loving thee?
If love for love thou wilt na gie,
At least be pity to me shown;
A thought ungentle canna be
The thought o' Mary Morison.


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