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Elphinstone Kist   Doric Prose, Family and Home

Learning the Good Book     by: Chalmers, Aimee

A wis the wee een, the shakkins o the poke. Ma faither nivver hid much tae say tae me, jist, 'Awa n git ma fags!' n oan a Seterday nicht ee'd say, 'Fars ma pincil?' n 'haud yer tung!' fan the fitba scores come oan the wireless.
"Arbroath 3, Montrose 1. Forfar 7, Bretchin, Nil'
Thon mannie c'dna sae the Scots nims tae save eesell.MOntrose, FOrfAr, BrETCHin. Specially BrETCHin, ee aye made an erse o't.
Fit a lauch, bit ye'd tae lauch ahent yir haun, saes ye didnae mak a noise n git yer faither riled.
'Get oot o' that!' ee sais tae me fan a wint intae ees baderoom ae Sunday moarnin n spiered if ma mither winted a cuppie tea. 'Go'an, get oot o that!'.

She sais she'd hae een in a minitie. Bit e nivver winted een. Ma faither aye spoke the same wiy, in Scots, faa'ever ee wis spikken tae. Bit ma mither c'd spikk Scots, an poash Engilish fan she winted, tae the meenister n the teacher n the doacter, fowk like'at. Fan she pit oan er guid claes, er moo wint a different shipp, mair pu'ed in like, n er tung wabbled aboot a different Wy.

Fan ye wisna weel ye goat tae lie in her bed, wi the firie oan,waitin fir the Doacter. An if she wis spikken aboot the doacter, she'd draa' er chin in n shak er heid fae side tae side like a waably doag.
'The Doactor said.......... An, 'wheesht, wheest,
wheest................. ‘ Ye didnae sae it loud, fit the doacter said.

Sae that's foo a learnt the Engilish, fae ma mither. It wis fir yasin wi the fowk thit telt ye fit tae dae. An it wisnae jist a wiy o spikken, ye wirna the same bodie, ye wir different yersell fan ye yased that langwidge.

Then in the schule ye learnt thit it wisna jist different wys o spicken, ae wiy wis richt n ae wiy wis wrang. Their wiy wis richt, n oor wiy wis wrang.
In the playgrun ye cried, 'Gies the baa! Gies the baa!'

Bit ye'd tae lave they wirds ootside, wi the baas, fan ye wint in agin.Sae ye learnt tae sae the wirds the wiy the teacher winted. Nae muckle wunner. Yon buk 'First Aid in English' - jees, ye'd tae ken yon buik aff b'hert.At buik mad me think Engilish wis oor langwidge.

'The English language is one of the most progressive of modern languages many words now in common use have their origin in such languages as Latin, Greek, French, Dutch and German.'

Oh weel, then, that wis us pit in oor pliss. Nae Scoats wirds ava. N b' Goad,b'the time we goat tae page 83, we sh'd've kent fine the answer tae the question, `Explain meaning of a 'dead' language."

Bit jist tae mak share, oan page 88, we wis tellt, n nae mistaak. Scotland wis there, bit the langwidge we spoke wis English ir Gaelic. Nae Scots avaa.The female negro m'be wisna affa plaised tae be caaed a negress, and er bairn a picaninny. Bit it least they wis there.There wis nae mannies ir wifies ir bairnies ava. Mibe it wis worth learnin aboot "a baren of mules, a covert of coots, a clowder of cats, a rag of colts" an a "smuck of jellyfish." Aither that ir oor teachers wis a richt `pace of asses" fir fillin up oor heids wi that havers. Ach, as fir me, a wisna bathered, a c'd spick Engilish tae the teachers if that wis fit they winted. A learned the buik like ah wis tellt. Bit a wis aye cumfier spikken tae the Jannie.

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