Allan Ramsay

SCENE I.

PROLOGUE.

The scene described in former page.

Glaud's onset. - Enter Mause an Madge.

MAUSE AN MADGE.

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MADGE.

Oor laird's come hame! an awns young Pate his heir!-

MAUSE.

That's news indeed!-

MADGE.

------As true as ye stand there!
As they were dancin a' in Symon's yaird,
Sir William, like a warlock, wi a beard
Five neives in length, an white as driven snaw,
Amang us cam, cried, "Haud ye merry a'!"
We ferlied meikle at his unco leuk.
While frae his pootch he whirled oot a beuk.
As we stuid roond aboot him on the green,
He viewed us a', but fixed on Pate his een;
Then pawkily pretended he could spae,
Yet for his pains an skill wad naething hae.

MAUSE.

Then shuir the lasses, an ilk gapin cuif,
Wad rin aboot him, an haud oot their luif.

MADGE.

As fast as flaes skip to the tate o woo,
Whilk slee tod-lowrie hauds ithoot his mow,
When he, to droun them, an his hips to cool,
In summer days slides backward in a puil!
In short, he did for Pate braw things foretell,
Ithoot the help o conjurin or spell.
At last, when weel diverted, he withdrew,
Pou'd aff his beard to Symon; Symon kent
His welcome maister-roond his knees he gat,
Hang at his coat, an syne for blytheness grat.
Paitrick was sent for - happy lad is he!-
Symon tauld Elspa; Elspa tauld it me.
Ye'll hear oot a' the secret story suin:
An troth it's e'en richt odd, when a' is duin,
To think how Symon ne'er afore wad tell-
Na, no sae meikle as to Pate himsel.
Oor Meg, puir thing, alake! haes lost her jo.

MAUSE.

It mey be sae, wha kens? an mey be no.
To lift a love that's ruited, is great pain:
Even kings hae taen a queen oot o the plain;
An what haes been before mey be again.

MADGE.

Sic nonsense! love tak ruit, but tocher guid,
'tween a herd's bairn, an ane o gentle bluid!
Sic fashions in King Bruce's days micht be;
But siccan ferlies nou we never see.

MAUSE.

Gif Pate forsakes her, Bauldy she mey gain:
Yonder he comes, an wow, but he leuks fain!
Nae dout he thinks that Peggy's nou his ain.

MADGE.

He get her! slaverin duif; it sets him weel
To yoke a pleuch where Paitrick thocht to till!
Gif I were Meg, I'd let young maister see-

MAUSE.

Ye'd be as dorty in yer choice as he?
An sae wad I! - But whisht! here Bauldy comes.

(ENTER BAULDY SINGIN).

SANG XVI.

Jockey said to Jenny, Jenny wilt thoo do't?
Ne'er a fit, qo Jenny, for my tocher guid-
For my tocher guid, I winna mairy thee;
E'en's ye like, qo Jockey, I can let ye be.

MAUSE.

Weel liltit, Bauldy; that's a denty sang.

BAULDY.

I'll gie ye't a'-it's better than it's lang.

Sings again.

I hae gowd an gear, I hae land eneuch,
I hae sax guid owsen gangin in a pleuch-
Gangin in a pleuch, an linkin ower the lee,
An gin ye winna tak me, I can let ye be;
I hae a guid ha'-hoose, a barn, an a byre;
A peat-stack 'fore the door will mak a rantin fire-
I'll mak a rantin fire, an merry sall we be,
An gin ye winna tak me, I can let ye be;
Jenny said to Jockey, gin ye winna tell,
Ye sall be the lad, I'll be the lass mysel;
Ye're a bonny lad, an I'm a lassie free,
Ye're welcomer to tak me than to let me be.
I trow sae! Lasses will come to at last,
Tho for a while they maun their snaw-ba's cast.

MAUSE.

Weel, Bauldy, how gaes a'?-

BAULDY.

-----Faith, unco richt:
I hope we'll a' sleep soond but ane this nicht.

MADGE.

An wha's th' unlucky ane if we mey ask?

BAULDY.

To finnd oot that is nae difficult task:
Puir bonny Peggy, wha maun think nae mair
On Pate, turned Paitrick, an Sir William's heir.
Nou, nou, guid Madge, an honest Mause, stand be,
While Meg's in dumps, put in a wird for me;
I'll be as kind as ever Pate coud prove,
Less wilfu, an aye constant in my love.

MADGE.

As Neps can witness, an the bushy thorn,
Where mony a time to her yer hert was sworn:
Fy! Bauldy, blush, an vows o love regaird;
What ither lass will trow a mansworn herd?
The curse o heeven hings aye abuin their heids,
That's ever guilty o sic sinfu deeds.
I'll ne'er advise my niece sae grey a gate;
Nor will she be advised fou weel I wat.

BAULDY.

Sae grey a gate! mansworn! an a' the rest!
Ye lee'd, auld roudes! - an, in faith, haed best
Eat in yer wirds, else I shall gar ye stand,
Wi a het face, afore the haly band!

MADGE.

Ye'll gar me stand? ye shevellin-gabbit brock;
Speak that again, an tremblin, dreid my rock,
An ten sherp nails, that when my hands are in,
Can flype the skin o ye'r cheeks oot ower yer chin.

BAULDY.

I tak ye witness, Mause, ye heard her say
That I'm mansworn. I winna let it gae.

MADGE.

Ye're witness, tae, he ca'd me bonny names,
An shoud be served as his guid breedin claims.
Ye filthy dug!--
[Flees to his hair like a fury. - A stoot battle. - Mause endeavours to redd them.]

MAUSE.

Let gang yer grips; - fy, Madge! - howt, Bauldy, leen;-
I wadna wish this tulzie haed been seen,
It's sae daft like.---

[Bauldy gets oot o Madge's clutches wi a bleedin nose.]

MADGE.

---It's dafter like to thole
An ether-cap like him to blaw the coal!
It sets him weel, wi vile unscrapit tongue,
To cast up whether I be auld or young;
They're aulder yet than I hae mairied been,
An, or they dee'd, their bairn? bairns hae seen.

MAUSE.

That's true; an, Baully, ye was far to blame,
To ca' Madge aucht but her ain christened name.

BAULDY.

My lugs, my nose, an noddle finnd the same.

MADGE.

Auld roudes! - filthy fallow; I sall auld ye!

MAUSE.

Howt, no! - ye'll e'en be freends wi honest Bauldy
Come, come, shake hands; this maun nae farder gae:
Ye maun forgie 'm; I see the lad leuks wae.

BAULDY.

In troth nou, Mause, I hae at Madge nae spite:
But she abuisin first was a' the wyte
O what haes happened; an should therefore crave
My pardon first, an shall acquittance have.

MADGE.

I crave yer pardon! gallows-face, gae greet,
An ain yer faut to her that ye wad cheat;
Gae, or be blasted in yer health an gear,
Till ye learn to perform as weel as swear!
Yow, an lowp back! was e'er the like heard tell?
Swith tak him deil, he's ower lang oot o hell.

BAULDY [RINNIN AFF].

His presence be aboot us! - curst were he
That were condemned for life to live wi thee.

MADGE [LAUGHIN].

I think I've towzed his harigalds a wee;
He'll no suin grein to tell his love to me.
He's but a rascal, that wad mint to serve
A lassie sae, he dis but ill deserve.

MAUSE.

Ye towined him tichtly - I commend ye for't;
His bluidin snoot gae me nae little sport;
For this forenuin he haed that scant o grace,
An breedin baith, to tell me to my face,
He hoped I was a witch, an wadna stand
To lend him in this case my helpin hand.

MADGE.

A witch! how haed ye patience this to bear,
An leave him een to see, or lugs to hear?

MAUSE.

Auld withered hands an feeble joints like mine,
Obliges fouk resentment to decline;
Till aft it's seen, when vigour fails, then we
Wi cunnin can the lack o pith supplie.
Thus I pat aff revenge till it was dark,
Syne bad him come, an we shoud gang to wark;
I'm shuir he'll keep his tryst; an I cam here
To seek yer help, that we the fuil mey fear.

MADGE.

An special sport we'll hae, as I protest;
Ye'll be the witch, an I sall play the gaist.
A linen sheet wund roond me like ane deid,
I'll cawk my face, an grane, an shake my heid.
We'll fleg him sae, he'll mint nae mair to gang
A conjurin to do a lassie wrang.

MAUSE.

Then let us gae; for see, it's hard on nicht,
The westlin clouds shine reid wi settin licht.
[Exeunt.

SCENE II.

PROLOGUE.

When birds begin to nod upon the bough,
An the green swaird growes damp wi fa'in dew,
While guid Sir William is to rest retired,
The Gentle Shepherd, tenderly inspired,
Walks throu the broom wi Roger ever leal,
To meet, to comfort Meg, an tak fareweel.

PATIE AN ROGER.

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ROGER.

Wow! but I'm cadgie, an my hert lowps licht!
O, Mr. Paitrick! aye yer thochts were richt!
Shuir gentle fouk are far'er seen than we,
That naething hae to brag o pedigree.
My Jenny nou, wha brak my hert this morn,
Is perfect yieldin - sweet - an nae mair scorn,
I spak my mind - she heard - I spak again-
She smiled - I kissed - I wooed, nor wooed in vain.

PATIE.

I'm gled to hear't - But O! my change this day
Heaves up my joy! - An yet I'm sometimes wae.
I've found a faither, gently kind as brave,
An an estate that lifts me 'buin the lave.
Wi leuks a' kindness, wirds that love confest,
He a' the faither to my saul expressed,
While close he held me to his manly briest.
"Sic were the een," he said, "thus smiled the mouth
O thy loved mither, blessin o my youth,
Wha set too suin!" - An while he praise bestowed,
Adoun his gracefu cheeks a torrent flowed.
My new-born joys, an this his tender tale,
Did, mingled thus, ower a' my thochts prevail;
That speechless lang, my late kend sire I viewed,
While gushin tears my pantin briest bedewed,
Unuisual transports made my heid turn roond,
Whilst I mysel, wi risin raptures, found
The happy son o ane sae much renowned.
But he haes heard! - Too faithfu Symon's fear
Haes brocht my love for Peggy to his ear:
Which he forbids. Ah! this confoonds my peace,
While thus to beat my hert shall suiner cease.

ROGER.

How to advise ye, troth I'm at a stand:
But were't my case ye'd clear it up aff hand.

PATIE.

Duty an hafflin reason plead his cause:
But what cares love for reason, rules, an laws?
Still in my hert my shepherdess excels,
An pairt o my new happiness repels.

SANG XVII.

TUNE - "Kirk wad let me be."

Duty an pairt o reason
Plead strang on the parent's side,
Which love superior ca's treason;
The strongest must be obeyed.
For nou, tho I'm ane o the gentry,
My constancy fauseheid repels;
For change in my hert haes no entry-
Still there my dear Peggy excels.

ROGER.

Enjoy them baith-Sir William will be won;
Yer Peggy's bonny-ye're his only son.

PATIE.

She's mine by vows an stronger ties o love;
An frae these bands nae change my mind shall move.
I'll wed nane else; throu life I will be true;
But still obedience is a parent's due.

ROGER.

Isna oor maister an yersel to stey
Amang us here? or are ye gawn awa
To London coort, or ither far aff pairts,
To leave yer ain puir us wi broken herts?

PATIE.

To Embro straucht to-morrow we advance;
To London neist, an efterwards to France,
Where I maun stey some years, an learn to dance,
An twa three ither monkey tricks. - That duin,
I come hame struttin in my reid-heeled shuin.
Then it's designed, when I can weel behave,
That I maun be some petted thing's dull slave,
For twa three bags o cash, that, I wat weel,
I nae mair need nor cairts do a third wheel.
But Peggy, dearer to me than my braith,
Suiner than hear sic news, shall hear my daith.

ROGER.

"They wha hae juist eneuch can soondly sleep;
The owercome only fashes fouk to keep."-
Guid Maister Paitrick, tak yer ain tale hame.

PATIE.

What was my mornin thocht, at nicht's the same:
The puir an rich but differ in the name.
Content's the greatest bliss we can procure
Frae 'buin the lift: ithoot it, kings are puir.

ROGER.

But an estate like yer's yields braw content,
When we but pick it scantly on the bent:
Fine claes, saft beds, sweet hooses, sparklin wine,
Guid cheer, an witty freends, whene'er ye dine;
Obeysant servants, honour, wealth, an ease:
Wha's no content wi these are ill to please.

PATIE.

Sae Roger thinks, an thinks nae far amiss;
But mony a cloud hings hoverin ower their blist.
The passions rule the roast; an if they're soor,
Like the lean kye, will suin the fat devoor.
The spleen, tint honour, an affronted pride,
Stang like the sharpest goads in gentry's side.
The gouts an gravels, an the ill disease,
Are frequentest wi fouk owerlaid wi ease;
While ower the muir the shepherd, wi less care,
Enjoys his sober wish, an halesome air.

ROGER.

Lord, man! I wonder aye, an it delytes
My hert, whene'er I herken to yer flichts!
How gat ye a' that sense, I fain wad hear,
That I mey easier disappointments bear?

PATIE.

Frae beuks, the wale o beuks, I gat some skill,
Thae best can teach what's real guid an ill.
Ne'er grudge, ilk year, to ware some stanes o cheese,
To gain thae silent freends, that ever please.

ROGER.

I'll do't an ye sall tell me whilk to buy:
Faith I'se hae beuks, tho I shoud sell my kye.
But nou, let's hear how ye're designed to move,
Between Sir William's will, an Peggy's love.

PATIE.

Then here it lies: his will maun be obeyed,
My vows I'll keep, an she shall be my bride:
But I some time this last design maun hide.
Keep ye the secret close, an leave me here;
I sent for Peggy - yonder comes my dear.

ROGER.

Pleased that ye trust me wi the secret, I,
To wyle it frae me, a' the deils defy.

[Exit Roger.

PATIE ALANE.

Wi what a struggle maun I nou impairt
My faither's will to her that hauds my hert!
I ken she loes, an her saft saul will sink,
While it stands tremblin on the hated brink
O disappointment. Heeven support my fair,
An let her comfort claim yer tender care!-
Her een are reid!---

ENTER PEGGY.

-----My Peggy, why in tears?
Smile as ye wont, allou nae room for fears:
Tho I'm nae mair a shepherd, yet I'm thine!

PEGGY.

I daurna think sae hiech: I nou repine
At the unhappy chance that made nae me
A gentle match, or still a herd kept thee.
Wha can, ithooten pain, see frae the coast
The ship that bears his a' like to be lost-
Like to be cairied by some reever's hand,
Far frae his wishes to some distant land?

PATIE.

Ne'er quarrel fate, whilst it wi me remains
To raise thee up, or still attend thae plains.
My faither haes forbid oor loves, I ain;
But love's superior to a parent's froun.
I fauseheid hate: come, kiss thy cares awa;
I ken to love as weel as to obey.
Sir William's generous; leave the task to me,
To mak strict duty an true love agree.

PEGGY.

Speak on! speak ever thus, an still my grief;
But short I daur to hope the fond relief.
New thochts a gentler face will suin inspire,
That wi nice air sooms roond in silk attire;
Then I, puir me! wi sichs mey ban my fate,
When the young laird's nae mair my hertsome Pate;
Nae mair again to hear sweet tales expressed,
By the blythe shepherd that excelled the rest:
Nae mair be envied by the tattlin gang,
When Patie kissed me, when I danced or sang:
Nae mair, alake! we'll on the meedow play,
An rin hauf braithless roond the rucks o hey:
As aft-times I hae fled frae thee richt fain,
An fa'n on purpose, that I micht be tane:
Nae mair aroond the foggy knowe I'll creep,
To watch an stare upon thee while asleep.
But hear my vow - t'will help to gie me ease-
Mey sudden daith, or deidly sair disease,
An warst o ills, attend my wretched life,
If e'er to ane but ye I be a wife!

SANG XVIII.

TUNE - "Wae's my hert that we should sunder."

Speak on, speak thus, an still my grief,
Haud up a hert that's sinkin under
Thae fears, that suin will want relief,
When Pate maun frae his Peggy sunder:
A gentler face, an silk attire,
A lady rich, in beauty's blossom,
Alake, puir me! will nou conspire
To steal thee frae thy Peggy's bosom.
Nae mair the shepherd, wha excelled
The rest, whase wit made them to wonder,
Shall nou his Peggy's praises tell:-
Ah! I can dee, but never sunder!
Ye meidows where we aften strayed,
Ye banks where we were wont to wander,
Sweet-scented rucks roond which we played,
Ye'll loss your sweets when we're asunder.
Again, ah! shall I never creep
Aroond the knowe wi silent duty,
Kindly to watch thee while asleep,
An wonder at thy manly beauty?
Hear, Heeven, while solemnly I vow,
Tho thoo shoud prove a wanderin lover,
Throu life to thee I shall prove true,
Nor be a wife to ony ither!

PATIE.

Shuir Heeven approves; an be ashuired o me,
I'll ne'er gang back o what I've sworn to thee,
An time-tho time maun interpose a while,
An I maun leave my Peggy an this isle;-
Yet time, nor distance, nor the fairest face,-
If there's a fairer - ower shall fill thy place.
I'd hate my risin fortune, shoud it move
The fair fundation o oor faithfu love.
If at my feet were crouns an sceptres laid,
To bribe my saul frae thee, delytefu maid!
For thee I'd suin leave thae inferior things,
To sic as hae the patience to be kings-
Wherefore that teir? - believe, an calm thy mind.

PEGGY.

I greet for joy, to hear thy wirds sae kind.
When hopes were sunk, an nocht but mirk despair
Made me think life was little worth my care,
My hert was like to burst; but nou I see
Thy generous thochts will save thy love for me
Wi patience, then, I'll wait ilk wheelin year,
Hope time awa, till thoo wi joy appear;
An a' the while I'll study gentler chairms
To mak me fitter for my traiveller's airms;
I'll gain on uncle Glaud-he's far frae fuil,
An winna grudge to put me throu ilk schuil,
Where I mey mainers learn.

SANG XIX

TUNE - "Tweedside."

When hope was quite sunk in despair,
My hert it was gaun to brak;
My life appeared worthless my care,
But nou I will save't for thy sake
Where'er my love travels by day,
Wherever he ludges by nicht,
Wi me his dear image shall stey,
An my saul keep him ever in sicht.
Wi patience I'll wait the lang year,
An study the gentlest o chairms:
Hope time awa till thoo appear,
To lock thee for aye in these airms.
Whilst thoo wast a shepherd, I prized
Nae hiecher degree in this life;
But nou I'll endeavour to rise
To a hicht that's becomin thy wife.
For beauty, that's only skin-deep,
Must fade like the gowans in Mey,
But inwardly ruited, will keep
For ever, ithoot a decay.
Nor age, nor the changes o life,
Can quench the fair fire o love,
If virtue's ingrained in the wife,
An the husband hae sense to approve.

PATIE.

-----That's wicely said,
An what he wares that wey shall be weel peyed,
Tho, ithoot a' the little helps o are,
Thy native sweets micht gain a prince's hert;
Yet nou, lest in oor station we offend,
We must learn modes to innocence unkend;
Affect at times to like the thing we hate,
An drap serenity to keep up state;
Lauch when we're sad, speak when we've nocht to say,
An, for the fashion, when we're blythe, seem wae;
Pey compliments to them we aft hae scorned,
Then scandalise them when their backs are turned.

PEGGY.

If this is gentry, I haed raither be
What I am still - but I'll be aucht wi thee.

PATIE.

Na! na! my Peggy, I but only jest
Wi gentry's apes; for still, amangst the best,
Guid mainers gie integrity a bleeze,
When native virtues join the arts to please.

PEGGY.

Since wi nae hazard, an sae sma' expense,
My lad frae beuks can gaither siccan sense,
Then why, ah! why shoud the tempestuous sea
Endanger thy dear life, an frichten me?
Sir William's cruel that wad force his son,
For watna-whats, sae great a risk to run.

PATIE.

There is nae dout but traivellin dis improve;
Yet I wad shun it for thy sake, my love;
But suin as I've sheuk aff my landwart cast
In foreign cities, hame to thee I'll haste.

PEGGY.

Wi every settin day an risin morn,
I'll kneel to Heeven an ask thy safe return.
Under that tree, an on the Suckler-brae,
Where aft we wont, when bairns, to rin an play;
An to the Hissel-shaw, where first ye vowed
Ye wad be mine, an I as eithly trowed,
I'll aften gang, an tell the trees an flouers,
Wi joy, that they'll bear witness I am yours.

SANG XX.

TUNE - "Bush abuin Traquair."

At settin day an risin morn,
Wi saul that still shall love thee,
I'll ask o Heeven thy safe return,
Wi a' that can improve thee.
I'll visit aft the birkin-bush,
Where first thoo kindly tauld me
Sweet tales o love, an hid my blush,
Whilst roond thoo did infald me.
To a' oor haunts I will repair,
To greenwud, shaw, or fountain;
Or where the summer-day I'd share
Wi thee upon yon mountain.
There will I tell the trees an flouers,
Frae thochts unfeigned an tender,
By vows ye're mine, by love is yours
A hert that canna wander.

PATIE.

My dear, allou me, frae thy temples fair,
A shinin ringlet o thy flowin hair,
Which, as a sample o each lovely chiarm,
I'll aften kiss, an wier aboot my airm.

PEGGY.

Were't in my pouer wi better boons to please,
I'd gie the best I coud wi the same ease;
Nor wad I, if thy luck haed fa'en to me,
Been in ae jot less generous to thee.

PATIE.