OH a' ye Nine wha wing the lift,
Or trip Parnassus' green;
Or through droll bardies' noddles skift,
And mak' them bauld and bien;
Attend me while a scene I lift,
An awfu' waefu' screen;
That aft moist sent my saul adrift,
Out at my vera een.
On mony a day.

Now draw the string—hail weel kent part,
Ye doors and firms—black gear;
But cease, thou flighterin' thuddin' heart,
Thou naething hast to fear;
The Muses deign thus low to dart,
To guard thy footsteps here;
Then cock thy bonnet brisk and smart,
The ferlies see and hear,
This waefu' day.

See how they're scuddin' up the stair,
A' breathless, and a' pechin'—
“Wha cam' last?” “Me,” cries some ane there—
Still up their comin' stechin';
Some oxtering pocks o' silken ware,
Some lapfus hov't like kechan;
An' aft the sigh, and hum, and stare,
E'en frichtet like they're hechin',
Sad, sad, this day.

“Is this the dolefu' jougs, gudewife,
Or black stool o' repentance?
Or are ye try't 'tween death and life,
And waiting for your sentence?
Ye leuk to be a dismal corps O' desolate acquaintance!”
“Whisht,” quo' the wife, “ye maunna roar,
Or lad yell soon be sent hence,
By Hab this day.”

Now twiggle twiggle goes the door,
In steps the foremost comer;
Tak's aff his cowl, pu's out his store,
A' shakin', tells the num'er.
The ready scales, a clinkin' corps
0' weights, amaist a hun'er;
Lets Andrew ken what down to score,
Syne heaves it out like lum'er,
In's neive this day.

Now, now, you wretch, prepare, prepare,
And tak' a snuff to cheer ye;
See how he spreads your lizures bare—
Hech, but they're black and dreary.
“Lord, sirrah,” Hab roars like a bear,
“What stops me but I tear ye?
Such lizures!—damn your blood, ye stare—
By God, ye dog, I'll swear ye
To hell this day.”

The poor soul granes aneath the rod,
As burning in a fever,
His knees to ane anither nod,
And hand, and lip pale, quiver.
The tiger stamps, with fury shod,
“Confound your blasted liver,
Bring hame the beating, and by God
Ye may be damned for ever,
For ought I care.”