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Elphinstone Kist   Maakers, Family & Home

    by: Murray, Charles

Belcanny is foggin’, wi’ siller laid by,
Wi’ byres fu’ o’ feeders an’ pedigree kye.
Wi’ horse in fine fettle for ploo or for Harrow,
An’ a’ the teels needit fae binder to barrow;
The fire hoose an’ steadin’ sneck-harled and hale,
Wi’ boortree for lythe an’ a gean at the gale;
A hillside o’ bracken for beddin’ the stots,
In hairst for the thackin’ a gushet a’ sprots;
The snod dykit feedle lies fair to the sun,
An’ anither Nineteen’s little mair nor begun;
He’s lucky, Belcanny, his boolie rowes weel,
But aye there’s a something—the wife is genteel.

Her fowk thocht a fairmer an unco come doon,
For a queyn that was teachin’ an’ raised i’ the toon.
But though like the lave her ambitions were big,
She couldna say ‘Na’ till a laad wi’ a gig;
An’ soon they were baith sittin’ cushioned an’ saft,
An’ passin’ the peppermints up i’ the laft.
An’ faith she was thrang wi’ her chuckens an’ cheese,
Her eggs and her butter an’ skepfu’s o’ bees;
An’ better still, Hogmanay hardly was by
Or the howdie was in, and she’d hippens to dry;
But aye there’s a something, a mote on the meen,
She’s great upon mainners—an’ Sandy has neen.

He’s roch an’ oonshaven till Sunday comes roon,
A drap at his nose, an’ his pints hingin’ doon;
His weskit is skirpit wi’ dribbles o’ kail,
He drinks fae his saucer, an’ rifts owre his ale;
An’ when he comes in fae the midden or moss
Her new-washen kitchie’s as dubby’s the doss.
She has her piana to dirl an’ to thump,
But gie him for music a spring on the trump;
She’s thankfu’ for muckle, her doonsittin’s fine,
The hoose an’ the plenishin’ just till her min’;
But aye there’s a something, the stab to the rose,
In spite o’ a’ tellin’—he blaws on his brose.

To haud them oonhappy would hardly be fair,
To ca’ them ill-marrowed would anger them sair,
There’s lots a’ waur bodies, she’ll freely alloo,
He’s hearty an’ kindly, baith sober an’ foo;
He grudges her naething, be’t sweeties or claes,
An’ has for her hizzyship clappin’ an’ praise.
She’s busy the but as a hen amon’ corn
Gin noses need dichtin’ or breekies are torn,
An’ ben when the littlins need happin’ or help,
To kiss or to cuddle, to scaul or to skelp.
They’re like her in looks as a podfu’ a’ piz,
But dam’t there’s aye something—their mainners are his.



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