27th Mar 2014Posted in: Others, The Confederation Poets 0
A Selection of Readings and Songs from the Works of John Imrie


 It is with grateful pleasure that I send out this the fourth edition of my poems, comprising in all SEVEN THOUSAND COPIES. I cannot complain, as some others have done, that Canada lacks appreciation of her writers, for I have had proofs, verbal and written, that many warm friends are mine in Canada, the United States, and Australia, on account of my humble effort to please them in prose and verse. This, I pray, will not make me proud or vain, but more careful to do, in the future, if spared, even better work than I have done in the past. As my most intimate friends know I have but few hours to spare from a very exacting business, and anything I have written has been done after working hours, and as a relaxation or relief from business and family cares. These circumstances will, I hope, be taken into account when critical eyes review my verses, and professional writers scan these pages. This small pocket edition is a selection of my effusions for society and social use, at a price that may put it within the reach of many that could ill afford a much larger sum, or indulge in a handsomely bound volume.

   This Pocket Edition may be had from the publishers, IMRIE, GRAHAM & CO., 31 Church St., Toronto, Canada, at 25 cents per copy; two copies for 45 cents; five copies for $1.00—all sent, post free, to any address. Noo, dinna forget: but buy twa copies—ane for yersel’, an’ the ither ane for some freen at hame or abroad!

Kindly glance over the “Index” at the end of the book—some of the titles might interest YOU! [unnumbered page]

of the Author
John Imrie

[unnumbered page]

[unnumbered page, includes illustration: John Imrie]



 Entered according to the Act of Parliament of Canada, in the year 1899, by IMRIE, GRAHAM & CO., Toronto, at the Department of Agriculture.

 “Neme me impune, lacessit.”
“Gae touch me if ye daur!”

Toronto, Canada;
[unnumbered page]

[blank page]

 Entered according to the Act of Parliament of Canada, in the year 1899, by IMRIE, GRAHAM & CO., Toronto, at the Department of Agriculture.




“SCOTLAND FOR EVER!”—Yes! who dares say, No!
   Tread her battle-fields—read their story!
First—aye, and last—to strike Liberty’s blow,—
   Old Scotland for ever and glory!

“SCOTLAND FOR EVER!”—by land or by sea,—
   Yes! Wherever a British flag waves;
Her motto is “DO, DARE, DIE—OR BE FREE!”
   Death to tyrants and freedom to slaves!

“SCOTLAND FOR EVER!”—in Commerce and Trade,
   Discovery, Conquest, and Learning;
At home and abroad a name she has made,
Brain, muscle, and nerve well discerning.

“SCOTLAND FOR EVER!”—in Home, Church, and School,
   God’s precepts were early imparted;
Love, Chivalry, Honour, and Freedom’s rule,
   Were taught by our parents true-hearted!

“SCOTLAND FOR EVER!”—our motto shall be,
   Her memories dear let us cherish;
If we forget thee—“Auld Scotland, the Free!”
   Let our names and our mem’ry perish! [unnumbered page]


Oh, I’ll aye be prood o’ Scotland
   Wherever I may be,
There never was a fairer land
   Girt by the rolling sea!
Wi’ mountains tow’ring up on high,
   Lochs, rivers, flowing free,
Lang gloamin’ sunsets in the sky,
   A bonnie sicht to see!

CHORUS.—Bonnie, bonnie Scotland,
                        The land sae dear to me;
                     Bonnie, bonnie Scotland,
                         I’ll aye be prood o’ thee!

Oh I’ll aye be prood o’ Scotland,
   Her commerce and her trade
Can equal that of any land
   On earth, ‘tis freely said:
Her ships, the best that man can make
   To cross the stormy sea,
For tonnage, size, and speed they take
   The “A One” guarantee!—CHO.

Oh, I’ll aye be prood o’ Scotland,
   Where genius brightly burns,
Wi’ monuments on ilka hand
   To Wallace, Knox, and Burrs!
Such names as these shall ever stand
   High on the scroll of fame,
Her sons are found in every land,
   A credit to her name!—CHO.

Oh, I’ll aye be prood o’ Scotland,
   Her heather and her nills.
Roun’ a’ the earth there is nae land
   Such love my bosom thrills;
I’ll brave the dangers o’ the deep
   Auld Scotland’s face to see,
An’ when I dee I’d like to sleep
   My lang last sleep in thee!—CHO. [page 2]


O’ a’ the hats that e’er I saw,
The brawest ane amang them a’
Is made o’ neither felt nor straw,
     The bonnets o’ Glengarry!

For comfort they can ne’er be beat,
They’re baith a pleasure an’ a treat,
They fit the croon o’ man sae neat,
     The bonnets o’ Glengarry!

They stan’ the test o’ wind an’ weather,
Whan buskit wi’ a braw big feather,
An’ twa-three-sprigs o’ Hielan’ heather,
     The bonnets o’ Glengarry!

Whan Scotlan’ was in sore distress,
Her sodger lads, in Hielan’ dress,
Rose up in airms her cause to bless,
     Wi’ bonnets o’ Glengarry!

When England fought at Waterloo,
She cau’d for Scotlan’s help sae true,
An’ tae the front oor laddies flew,
     Wi’ bonnets o’ Glengarry.

Then get awa’ wi’ this-and-that,
Your “Gerry,” “lum,” an’ “cockit hat!”
A fig for them that’s sneerin’ at
     My bonnet o’ Glengarry!

Noo, let me say “guid-bye” tae you,
An’ tak’ my Hielan’ bonnet noo,
Na either cloot shall croon my broo.
     Than that frae auld Glengarry! [page 3]


The farther Scotchmen gang frae hame
   They seem to grow the fonder
O’ everything that’s Scotch in name,
   An’ crack aboot it yonder—
Ayont Atlantic’s briny foam;
   They a’ ken ane anither—
The Scot’s at hame where’er he roam,
   An’ share to find a brither!

CHORUS.—St. Andrews, Caledonians, Clans,
                        As Sons o’ Scotland gather;
An’ Gaelic braw “John Hielan’smans!”
                        Are prood o’ hame and heather!

An’ whan St. Andrew’s day comes roon
   There’s aye a demonstration,
They march wi’ pipers through the toon,
   In honour o’ oor nation;
At nicht they spread a table fair,
   An’ mak’ a jolly pairty,—
They’re share to hae a’ guid things there,
   Tae mak’ them crouse an’ hearty!—CHO.

The hall is set a’ roon wi’ flags,
   And sometimes screeds o’ tartan;
Wi’ claymores, shields, and heids o’ stags,
   Frae Oban and Dumbarton!
Each coat, in button hole, is seen
   A sprig o’ Heilan heather,
Wi’ a bonnie rose-bud in between,
   To show they gree thegither!—CHO.

It’s then they crack o’ Scotland’s micht,
   O’ Wallace, Knox, an’ Burns;
An how a Scotchman fechts for richt,—
   Gie speeches a’ in turns!
The auld Scotch sangs their hearts enthral,
   They lo’e the words sae fine,
Tae the “wee short hour ayont the tawl,”
   Whan they pairt wi’ “Auld Lang Syne!”—CHO. [page 4]


Yes! ca’ me “Scotty” if ye will,
For sic’ a name can mean nae ill;
O’ a’ nick-names just tak’ yer fill,—
     I’m quite content wi’ ‘Scotty!”

To be a Scot is nae disgrace,
Maist folk can trust a guid Scotch face!
He’s never lang oot o’ a place,—
The honest, faithful “Scotty!’

A Scotchman has the knack to plod,
Through thick an’ thin he’ll bear his load;
His trust is aye in richt an’ God,—
The perseverin’ “Scotty!”

He’s ‘tentive baith to kirk an’ mart,
To friends he’s true an’ hard to part,
In life’s great race he needs nae start,—
     “I’ll win or dee,” says “Scotty!”

An’ if he meets wi’ ane or twa
O’ Scotlan’s sons when far awa’,
They’ll ‘gree like brithers, ane and a,—
     A “clannish” man is “Scotty!”

Though aft he travels far frae hame,
He’s aye a Scotchman a’ the same,
An’ prood to crack o’ Scotlan’s fame,—
     A loyal sons is “Scotty!”

Should Scotlan’ ever need his help,
He’ll gie her enemies a skelp,
An’ make them rin like frichted whelp,
     And gie respect to “Scotty!”

Then, ca’ me “Scotty” if ye will,
Nick-name like that can work nae ill;
I’ll shake yer han’ wi’ richt guid will,
Whane er ye ca’ me “Scotty!” [page 5] 


When ye wad gae wrang—say “No!” to yourself’!
   “No!” to yoursel’!—“No!” to yoursel’!
Each time you resist far stronger you’ll be—
Wipe dust frae your specks—much clearer you’ll see—
Don’t crouch like a slave—be manly and free!
   And learn to say “No!” to yoursel’!

When Passions wad rule—say “No!” to yoursel’!
   “No” to yoursel’!—“No!” to yoursel’!
Let Love, Honour, Truth, and Virtue be yours—
The sunshine o’ life—life’s bonnie wee flowers—
They’ll sweeten the cup o’ your fadin’ hours!—
   Dae richt—an’ say “No!” to yoursel’!

Whan Temper wad rise—say “No!” to yoursel’—
   “No!” to yoursel’!—“No!” to yoursel’!
Wha rules his ain heart is mair than a king,
A richer reward than jewels ‘twill bring,—
When tempted to scold just smiling sing!—
   I’ve learned to say “No!” to mysel’

When tempted to drink say “No!” to yoursel’!
   “No!” to yoursel’!—“No!” to yoursel’!
Just think o’ yer wife, yer hame, an’ yer weans,—
Taunts frae yer cronies will ne’er brak yer banes—
Weak minded men get Remorse for their pains,
   By NOT saying “No!” to theirsels’!

To a’ Satan’s wiles say “No!” to yoursel’!
   “No!”to yoursel’!—“No!” to yoursel’!
Dinna get crookit, cross, cranky, nor fu’!
Let God’s gouden rule be motto for you
He’ll gie ye a place wi’ leal folk an’ true,—
   An’ help ye say “No!” to yoursel’! [page 6]


Oor hoose is sma’, but snod and clean,
Ye’ll get a welcome frae oor Jean,
Her scourin’-things shine like a preen,—
          Aye ca’ n as ye gae by!

CHORUS—We’ll mak’ ye welcome, Jean an’ I,
                     Aye ca’ in as ye gae by;
                  Tho’ ye be hungry, wat or dry,
                      Aye ca’ in as ye gae by!

Oor bonnie weans—like staps-an’-stairs—
Will no put on dour, saucy airs,
But rin’ an’ get ye cosy chairs,—
          Aye ca’ in as ye gae by!—CHO.

We’ll sing a song, or hae a crack,
O’ sense an’ wit we’ll hae nae lack,
To put in min’ the days gaen back,—
          Aye ca’ in as ye gae by!—CHO.

We’ll crack o’ freens ayont the sea,
O’ scenes sae dear to you an’ me,
We’ll mind an’ lo’e until we dee,—
          Aye ca’ in as ye gae by!—CHO.

True friendship is life’s greatest bliss,
Its pleasures wha wad like to miss?
Gin ye be oors—tak’ tent to this,—
          Aye ca’ in as ye gae by!—CHO. [page 7] 


Wha had the bringin’ o’ ye up,
An’ gied ye bosie, bite, an’ sup,
Aye cuddl’d ye sae cosie up?—
          Yer mither!

Wha wrapp’d ye in her warm bed-claes,
An’ tuck’d a’ in yer han’s an’ taes;
Croon’d ye to sleep wi’ “Banks and Braes”?—
          Yer mither!

Wha made yer first wee pair o’ breeks,
That “sprang a leak” in twa-three weeks,
Then patch’d them up wi’ clouts an’ steeks?—
          Yer mither!

Wha help’d ye wi’ yer A B C
An’ count-the-clock—tawl, ane, taw, three!
Then “piece-an’-sugar” wad ye gie?—
          Yer mither!

Wha ca’d ye aye her ain wee man,
Whan errants noo-an’-then ye ran,
Syne lat ye scart the jellie pan?—
          Yer mither!

Wha made ye ready for the schule,
An’ bade yer han’s an’ feet be still,
Syne ca’d ye aft “a glaikit fule”?—
          Yer mither!

Wha skelpit ye whan ye did wrang,
Then sooth’d ye wi’ an auld Scotch sang,
An’ gied ye breed-an’-cheese a whang?—
          Yer mither!

On Sabbath, wha hid bools and ba’s,
An’ wash’d yer haskit feet an’ claws,
Then gart ye learn God’s holy laws?—
          Yer mither!

Wha took ye wi’ her tae the kirk,
An’ tauld ye no tae sleep or smirk,
But “min’ the text”—“nae heeds to shirk”?—
          Yer mither! [page 8]

An’ whan ye grew to be aman,
Wha lik’d to hear ye lay yer plan
To learn a trade—dae what ye can—
For mither?

An’ whan her time cam’ roon’ to dee,
Wha bade ye dry yer tearfu’ e’e,
An’ meet her, yont life’s stormy sea?—
          Yer mither!

Wha pray’d that you’d be guid an’ great,
An’ no lose grup o’ Heaven’s estate,—
Wha’ll meet you first at Heaven’s gate?—
          Yer mither!


Tho’ ithers tak’ the easy road,
Be yours in patience aye to pod,
Trust less in man and mair in God—
     Dae richt and daur the deil!
Ne’er lippen to the tempter’s snare,
O’ a’ his wiles an’ bribes beware,
Wale oot your staps wi’ muckle care—
     Dae richt an’ ye’ll dae weel!

Let conscience clear as crystal shine,
The “gowden rule” keep aye in min’,
An’ roon your heart let love entwine—
     An’ ye’ll aye happy feel;
Ye’ll fin’ this aye the safest plan—
Dae richt—an’ aye the best ye can,
God helps the honest upright man—
     Dae richt an’ ye’ll dae weel!

Use weel the talents God has lent,
Let ilka hour be wisely spent,
In a’ ye dae hae guid intent,
     As up life’s hill ye speil!
An’ tho’ the way be steep an’ bare,
Aye onward press wi’ faith an’ prayer,
Till aince you hear Our Faither there
     Say oot—‘YE’VE DONE GEY WEEL!” [page 9]


As seen on board an ocean steamer, by the writer, a native of Scotland, when returning from a prolonged absence in America.

As I approach thee, lovely Clyde,
   My heart wi’ rapture thrills,
My longing eyes behold wi’ pride
   The bonnie Arran hills;
The graceful ben o’ Brodick Bay
   Calls back the scenes o’ yore,
When many a happy summer’s day
   Was spent upon thy shore?

               Oh Arran hills! dear Arran hills!
                  I’ve long’d sae aft to see;
               Wi’ native pride my bosom thrills,
                  Weel may I sing o’ thee!

And there, defying change o’ Time,
   Stan’s clear against the sky,
The mountain tap I used to climb,
   Dear auld Goat Fell sae high;
Glen Sannox nestles at thy fit—
   The sight my rapture wins;
An’ roon thy sides the swallows flit,
   ‘Mang heather, flowers, and whins!—CHO,

The bonnie Arran hills for me
   Wi’ sunlit taps o’ glory,
Fit emblem o’ the brave an’ free
   O’ ancient Scottish story!
When far frae thee o’er ocean wide,
   Fond memories come to cheer me,
I’ll sing o’ thee wi’ loyal pride,
   An’ wish I were but near thee!—CHO. [page 10]


Aye mak’ the maist o’ every hour,
   An’ laugh an’ smile fu’ cheerie, O!
Gae by the whins, an’ pu’ the flower,
   An’ think o’ a’ that’s dearie, O!
Ne’er fash your heed wi’ future ills,
It’s useless wark an’ wearie, O!
Gae singin’ on like mountain rills,
   An’ no like hoolets drearie, O!

Ne’er let a runkle mar your face,
   Your heart keep young an’ cheerie, O!
Sour words an’ looks are oot o’ place
   Amang your friens sae dearie, O!
An’ if misfortune should owertak’;
   An’ things get tapsalterie, O!
Guid sense an’ wit shall droon the pack,
   An’ mak’ them blin an’ blearie, O!

The man that mak’s the best o’ life,
   O’ life he’ll ne’er grow weary, O!
He’ll love his weans, an’ kiss his wife,
   An’ mak’ h shame fu’ cheerie, O!
God kens and fens the honest man,
   Through life an’ death He’ll bear him, O!
A happy life is God’s ain plan,
‘Tis theirs that love an’ fear Him, O! [page 11]



Death token frae my native lan’,
   Thou bonnie bunch o’ heather!
I’ll shelter ye wi’ tender han’
   Frae oor extremes o’ weather;
I’ll plant ye in a pat o’ mool
   Brought a’ the way frae Oban,
An’ slochan ye wi’ water cool
An clear as frae Loch Loman’!

An’ when the Scotchman’s day comes roon—
   Saint Andra’s day sae cheerie!
I’ll tak’ ye wi’ me to the toon,
   To busk my auld Glengarry;
An’ you’ll see faces there your ken,
   Wha speiled wi’ me the heather,—
Braw Hielan’ lasses an’ their men
   Shall dance a reel thegither!

Then will I gie ye bit-by-bit,
   Each ane a sprig o’ heather,—
To keep ye a’ I’ll no be fit
   Aince we meet a’ thegither!
At sight o’ ye we’ll a’ feel good,
   We loe sae ane anither;
For, ye mann ken, we’re unco prood
   O’ Scotlan’ an’ her heather!

How aft your purple face has seen
   Auld Scotia’s heroes gather?
How aft the patriot’s bluid hath been
   Spill’d ruthless on the heather?
For Freedom, Liberty, an’ Right,
   Read Scotlan’s deathless story;
Oor faithers left us by their might
   A heritage o’ glory! [page 12]




Let Scotia’s sons with honor tell,
Of how our fathers fought so well,
And how proud Edward’s legions fell
     Upon the field of Bannockburn!

De Bruce reviewed his trust band,
And o’er them stretched his brave right hand:
“Fight for your rights and this fair land,
     Or die with me at Bannockburn!”

The dawn of day crept o’er the hill,
The Scottish army—calm and still—
Committed to God’s holy will
     The loss or gain of Bannockburn!

On! on! the English forces flew,
A hundred men to one I trew,
Yet routed were they by a few
     Brave Scottish Clans at Bannockburn!

Ere yet that evening’s sun had set
The field with alien blood was wet,
For there to Sons of Scotland met
     To claim their rights at Bannockburn!

Let sires their sons this history tell
Of how our fathers fought and fell,
For FREEDOM that they loved so well,
     And won for us at Bannockburn! [page 13]


I stan’ beside the cault head-stane,
   An’ wat it wi’ my tears;
An’ whisper, “Mither, here’s your wean
   You hav’ na’ seen for years!
Whan last I saw your dear, sweet face,
   An’ heard your kindly tone,
I little thought that this dread place
   So soon would claim its own.

I plann’d to tak’ you ower the sea
   To comfort an’ to ease,
Whaur you could end your days wi’ me,
   An’ dae maist as you please;
But, ah! the Lord had ither plans,
   An’ sent for you Himsel’;
His ways are no’ aye like to man’s,
   Yet does He a’ things well!

But, though you canna come to me,
   I ye shall gang to you,
When death shall set my spirit free
   I’ll mount yon starry blue,
Where grief an’ partings are no more,
   Nor Death, nor any pain,
You’ll welcome me on Canaan’s shore,
   We’ll never pairt again!

Farewell! most sacred spot to me,
   My dear auld mither’s grave,
I’ll think o’ thee when ower the sea,
   Ayont Atlantic’s wave;
Our graves may yet be far apart,
   Our spirits joined shall be,
There’s aye a green spot in my heart,
   My mither dear, for thee! [page 14]


Oh! weel dae I min’ the days that are gane,
   O’ goblins, ghaists, warlocks an’ wutches!
An’ weel dae I min’ when I was a wean,
   The auld wives an’ grannies wore mutches!
Braw, clean, snod, an’ weel piped mutches,
   Noo scarce dae I ever see ony,
Wi’ ribbons that whisk’d roon like swutches,
   Frae faces haith kindly an’ bonnie!

‘Neath my mither’s white mutch there was grace,
   Like a halo set a’ roon her heid!
There was love in her bonnie sweet face,
   When she sat doon at nicht for to read!
Oh! she smiles at me yet in my dreams,
   As I pu’ the lang strings o’ her mutch!
An’ her face wi’ merriment gleams,
   As she ca’s me a tricky wee wutch!

Braw servant lassies, in hoose an’ in ha’,
   Look’d blithesome, an’ couthie, an cheerie,
In mutches—white as the new driven sna’
   When they stroll’d oot at nicht wi’ their dearie!
Nae trouble to kiss ‘neath the mutches,
   Their e’en were sae temptin’ an bonnie;
An’ gey an’ weel-pleas’d were the wutches
   When lips were aft pree’d by their Johnnie!

Such warrin’, and daurin’, and doin’,
   ‘Mang the lassies an’ lads o’ langsyne,
Wi’ mutches the wutches were wooin’,
   Till the lads lost their balance o’ min’!
The lads are no noo in sich passion,
   For the lassies wear fal-de-ral hats!
Since mutches hae gane oot o’ fashion,
   Lads an’ lassies are prim as auld cats! [page 15]


Dinna weary o’ the auld folk,
   An’ wish that they were dead;
There was guid stuff in the auld stock,
   O’ mind, an’ heart, an’ heid!
They car’d for us when we were young,
   An fed us wi’ their best;
Fu’ mony a cheerie sang they sung
Whan croonin’ us to rest.

Dinna weary o’ the auld folk—
   They never tired o’ you,
Saved us frae many a hard-knock,
   An’ aye were kind an’ true!
Ane guid turn deserves anither—
   Oor turn to them is plain—
Be kind to faither an’ mither,
   An’ ease their care an’ pain.

We may be auld folk yet oorsel,
   An’ need a kindly word—
Whan weary hearts wi’ sorrow swell,
   Cross words cut like a sword;
Death levels a’—let Peace abide—
   Wi’ love an’ harmonie,
We’ll a lie still, an’ free frae pride,
In graves—sax feet by three.

Then dinna weary o’ auld folks,
   They’ll no be wi’ us lang,
Aye cheer them up wi’ cracks an’ jokes,
   Lilt them an auld Scotch sang!
Pit up wi’ their auld-fashioned ways,
   Be never dour or thrawn;
An’ make the gloamin’ o’ their days
   As happy as oor dawn! [page 16]


“GORDON HIGHLANDERS! CHARGE!”—The pipers played,
Not a soul drew back—not a man afraid!
“The Cook o’ the North!” crow’d loud in their ears,
As they answered back with three British cheers!
Up the Dargai Heights the Gordon’s flew,—
It was “DEATH OR VICTORY” well they knew;
Yet, as long as they heard the pipes play,
Foot-by-foot they climb’d for the bloody fray!

While the enemy rain’d down deadly shot
And the ranks were thinn’d where the fire was hot,
Still the pipers play’d on with might and main.
As the Gordons charged for the heights again!
With a rush and a bound they scal’d the height—
Hark!—“BAYONETS, CHARGE!”—How the Gordons fight!
While, ‘mid carnage and blood, the pipers fell,
On stumps played they “Cock o’ the North” right well!

‘Ere the bugle sounded at set of sun,
The heights were taken!—the battle was won!
‘Mid the groans of dying and wounded men,
Findlater was heard “at his pipes” again!
It cheered the dying in their last despair,—
Such music and “VICTORY!” rent the air:—
Through “the valley of Death” then march’d they forth,
To the marital strains of “Cock o’ the North!”

Oh! mothers at home! mourn not for your sons,
For they bravely fell ‘neath the rebel guns;
Their deeds shall be told till the end of time,—
To fall like a hero is death sublime’!
In the battle of life this lesson teach,—
We all have “Our Dargai Heights” to reach;
And, gain we the summit, or fighting, fall,
God crowns his heroes at Death’s roll-call! [page 17]


Scotland! my own, my native land,
   Thy broom hills and silv’ry streams,
They haunt me on this foreign strand—
   How oft I see them in my dreams!
I clap my hands in childish glee,
   And play again upon thy shore;
But, waking, weep!—no more for me
Those happy, happy days of yore.

I’ve wander’d from thee, fairest land!
   And pine upon another shore,—
Strange sights and scenes on ev’ry hand
   Remind me, that I love thee more!
A sprig of heather from thy hills,
   A bonnie flower from yon sweet dell,—
At sight of these my fond heart thrills
   And throbs beneath their potent spell!

I hear a song—a song of thee!
   Sung in the Doric, pure and sweet,
Of Scottish love and chivalry,
   With pleasure I am like to greet;
I hear a voice—one like my own—
   While passing by some market-place.
In accent, pathos, twang, and tone—
   And claim my kin—A Scottish face!

Oh! dearest land on God’s fair earth,
   May I be spar’d thy face to see!
Land of my sires!—Land of my birth!
   None other can be “hame” to me!
Where’er my wand’ring footsteps rove,
   My heart is ever true to thee;
And warmest blessings, pray’rs, and love,
Are daily wafted ower the sea! [page 18]


Sons of Scotland! land of freedom!
   Sons of noble sires, all hail!
Let your watchword aye be “Freedom!”
   You shall evermore prevail!
Let the wrong be deeply hated,
   Let the right be priz’d like love,
Martyr-courage unabated,
   Trusting in your God above!

Sons of Scotland! bards historic
   Sang your deeds of noble fame,
Let not tyranny plethoric
   Tarnish your unsullied name;
History gives us what we cherish,
   Ours to still maintain the right,
May that history never perish,
   Though we perish in the fight!

Like the waters from our fountains,
   Giving strength to flesh and bone;
Like the thistle on our mountains,
   Harmless, if but let alone! 
Ours to shield the needy stranger,
   Ours to put the erring right;
Ours to stand in time of danger,
   And, if need be, ours to fight!

Dear old Scotia! land of flowers,
   Land of mountain, hill and vale,
Land of sunshine, shade and showers,
   Land of river, loch, and dale;
Land of ever-changing beauty,
   Land of liberty and love;
Scotchmen! tread the path of duty,
   Till we reach yon land above! [page 19]


One hundred years since Burns died,
   And hundreds more may roll,
Still shall he be Auld Scotia’s pride,
   High on her honour’d scroll;
His songs have won the human heart
   Wherever shines the sun—
Great High-Priest of poetic art,
   Thy work was nobly done!

They say that thou art dead—not so?
   True poets never die!
For on and on their measures flow,
   As boundless as the sky!
Glad songs of HOPE, and LOVE, and TRUTH,
   Shall never know decay—
Burns lives in an eternal youth,
   While empires pass away.

His songs of HOPE have cheer’d the slave
   On many a dark domain,
Glad echoes roll from wave to wave,
   And bids them break their chain!
‘Man’s inhumanity to man
   Makes countless thousands mourn!”
Burns taught the Brotherhood of Man,
   The tyrant laugh’d to scorn!

His songs of LOVE are sung to-day
   On every foreign shore,
And shall with human hearts hold sway,
   Till time shall be no more!
Their dove notes mild can soothe a child,
   Or play the lover’s part
In court or cottage—love beguiled—
   They woo and win the heart!

His songs of TRUTH all creeds uphold—
   “A man’s a man for a’ that!”
An honest man’s as good as gold,
   An’ nane can yet misca’ that!
He had his faults, and so have we,
   His virtues let us cherish;
His songs are sung from sea to sea,
   Burns’ name shall never perish! [page 20]


When troubles rise, like cluds in skies,
   An’ a things eerie seem,
Keep up your heart, though freens depart,
   Nae time is that to dream!
The weakest man in a’ the lan’,
   Is he that has nae foe,
Trust mair in self than freens or pelf,
   An’ whustle as ye go!

     CHO.—Just whustle to yersel’, my man,
                     Some cantie tune ye ken,
                  The deil himsel’ can’t stand the spell
                      O’ cheery, whustlin’ men,

Should love beguile, just wait awhile,
   There’s guid fish in the sea,
The fickle jaud may get nae lad,
   She’s no the lass for thee.
Tak’ time to think, an’ in a blink,
   The richt lass ye will see;
Just whustle some, an’ she will come,
   Wi’ love-licht in here e’e!—CHO. 

Some married men, as ye may ken,
   Hae sometimes cause to dree—
A scolding wife may vex his life,
   An’ oot the hoose he’ll flee!
But don’t do that, like frichted cat,
   Just tak’ advice frae me:
Be unca fain, an’ haud the wean,
   An’ syne she’ll mask the tea!

     CHO.—She canna whustle like you, guid-man,
                     An’ that ye brawly ken;
                  But she can sing, an’ comfort bring
To cheery, whustlin’ men. [page 21]


Come, lassies and lads, noo listen to me—
     Tak’ aye your mither’s advice!
If ye wad be wise, an’ escape life’s snares,
Gang hame an’ tell mither your joys an’ cares,
You’re aye in her thochts, an’ after in her prayers,
Sae, tak’ your mither’s advice.

Her counsel is wise an’ safe to follow—
     Then, tak’ your mither’s advice;
She’s kent ye langest o’ ony on earth,
‘Tended ye weel since the day o’ your birth,
She’ll soothe you in pain, or join you in mirth,
     Sae, tak’ your mither’s advice!

Dinna think ye ken as muckle as her,
     But tak’ your mither’s advice!
Wha tak’s her advice prosperity wins,
A biddenless wean to destruction rins,
She kens life’s sorrows, its oots an’ its ins,
     Sae, tak your mither’s advice!

When lads come courtin’ in her aye confide,
     An’ tak’ your mither’s advice!
If they’re weel daein’ she’ll no say them, Nay,
But bid them come ben an’ be cheerie as day,
Guid lads like a lassie that acts in that way,
     An’ tak’s her mither’s advice!

Should lads ever say—“Noo, dinna’ you mind,
     Don’t tak’ your mither’s advice!”
You’ll find oot in time, tho’ mebbe too late,
He’s no your best friend’, an’ left to your fate,
You’ll learn this lesson—‘tis better to wait,
     An’ tak’ your mither’s advice!

Ye’ll no hae her lang, be kind to her noo,
     An’ tak’ your mither’s advice!
As lang as she lives she’ll aye be your frien’,
Nae love like a mither’s on earth may be seen,
An’ when she’s awa’ keep her memory green,
     She aye gied ye guid advice! [page 22]


There’s nae folk like oor folk,
   Gae travel whaur ye will,
There’s guid stuff in oor stock,
   Frae ilka glen or hill;
Scotland is a sma’ place,
   But a’ the warld ower,
Ye’ll aye see a Scotch face,
   O’ men they are the flower!

There’s nae folk like oor folk,
   Their hearts are kind and true;
There’s aye meal in oor pock
   For a’ oorsels an’ you!
Ye’ll ne’er want a true frien’
   When worth the giftie earns
Kindly words are aye gie’n
   Amang John Tamson’s bairns!

There’s nae folk like oor folk
   When friend’s are ill or dee,
The feelin’ word is aye spoke,
   When sorrow dims the e’e;
I’ll dee at peace abroad,
   Wi’ Scotchmen by my side,—
We’re a’ the bairns o’ God,
Tho’ scatter’d far an’ wide. [page 23]



Gae ‘wa’ wi’ a’ your fancy trash,
   The pipe to me bring!
The dances noo are wishy-washm
   Gie me the Hielan’ fling!
It makes my bluid loup like a boy’s
   To hear the bagpipes skirl,
Baith young an’ auld may weel rejoice
   To see the kilties birl.

Bring oot yer lads an’ lassies fair
   Upon the village green,
An’ let me see them dance ance mair,—
   A sicht for auld Scotch e’en!
I feel as licht’s a feather noo—
   Ma feet’ll no ‘bide still;
I think I’ll jine the lassies too,
   An’ dance wi’ richt guidwill!

Hech! Georgie, man! that sounds fu’ weel,
   Whan ye blaw up yer chanter!
I feel I maist could fecht the deil,
   An’ mak’ him tak’ a canter!
Noo, in their place, they a’ advance,
   An’ beck-an’-boo thegither,
An’ launch to see us jine the dance—
   Their faither an’ their mither!

An’ what for no! I’d like to ken,
   Should we no feel sae jolly?
A turn like this ta’en noo an’ then
   Is cure for melancholy!
Then blaw awa’, guid Georgie, man,
An’ geist in “double time!”
A’m sure we’ll dae the best we can,
   Hech! this is unca’ prime! [page 24]


Ae nicht I sat my lee-some lain,
   Beside the big ha’ stove,
A-dreamin’ ower and ower again
   O’ folk an’ scenes I love;
In thocht I cross’d the big saut sea
   An’ smelt the caller air
O’ bonnie Scotland, dear to me,
   My native lan’ sae fair!

Guid bless my heart! what’s that I hear?
The strains o’ “Tullochgorum!”
Some Hielan’ laddies maun be near,
   Guid feith I’ll jine their quorum!
I took my bonnet frae the wa’.
   An’ roun’ me drew my plaidie,
Then briskly stappit frae the ha’,
   Said—“Lads, I’ll walk beside ye!”

We marched a’ up an’ doon the toon,
   The chanter gaed a-hummin’;
The piper noo had changed his tune:—
   “The Campbells are a-comin’!”
It made me walk sae smart an’ vain,
   I couldna’ speak my feelin’s,—
It seem’d to me like hame again,
   An’ I were in the Hielan’s!

We marched into a great big ha’,
   Like colts we a’ got prancin’,
Sine lads an’ lassies ane an’ a’
   Pair’d oot an’ fell a-dancin’!
It was a happy nicht to me,
Wi’ fun an’ daffin’ cheerie;
I’ll mind it till the day I dee,
   We never seem’d to wearie!

We a’ join’d hands an’ made a ring,
   Ilk jo link’d to his dearie,
An’ then we a’ began to sing,—
   “For a’ Lang Syne,” fu’ cheerie!
‘Twas then amange the wee sma’ hours,
   The snaw was fa’in’ rarely;
Ilk tartan plaid wrapt twa Scotch flowers—
   The piper played—“Prince Charlie!” [page 25]


Come here, you little rag-amuffin!
I’ll give your ears a right food cuffin’!
          I do declare
          Your only pair
Are torn again, an’ fit for nuffin’
But nails, an’ twine, an’ marbles’ stuffin’!
          Your nut brown knees,
          By climbin’ trees,
Have made some rents as big’s a muffin,
An’ yet you say, “It’s done by nuthin’!”

Come, shed your pants this very minnit,
Until I put some stitches in it!
          Boys will be boys,
             No matter how;
          An’ as for noise,
             Losh! what a row
They do kick up from morn’ till night,
An’ tease, an’ squeeze, an’ quarr’l an’ fight!
          An’ that’s the way,
          ‘Most every day,
Your pants at knees and seat are bursted,
Tho’ made o’ strongest kind o’ worsted!
          If they were made,
          As oft I’ve said,
Of half inch, solid, well-tann’d leather,
I’m sure I don’t know if they’d weather
          Such sad abuse,
          An’ constant use,
An’ hold your restless limbs together
Without the ‘tension o’ your mither!

See, there, my stars! your pants are patch’d,
With scarce an inch o’ cloth that’s match’d!
          Now, put them on,
             An’ get to school,
          But, mind you, John,
             I’ve made a rule:— 
If you come back like that again,
An’ from your climbin’ don’t refrain, [page 26]
          I’ll turn you oot,
          Without a suit,
To wander in the wind and rain,
An’ dare you to come back again,
          An’ then, my lad,
          You will be glad
To take more pains to save your knees,
When climbin’ fences, posts, and trees,
An’ me the ‘tendin’ o’ your wants,
To patch your “only pair o’ pants!”


I stand upon a foreign shore
   And gaze across the sea,
Fond memories bridge the waters o’er,
   Sweet home-thoughts come to me;
Once more I see the bonnie hills,
   Feel gladsome, young and free,
My heart with loyal rapture thrills—
   Dear land ayont the sea.

I see aince mair the gowans fair,
   And scent the hawthorn bloom,
I feel the pure sweet mountain air
   Blaw fresh from heather broom;
I hear glad voices as of yore
   Sing sangs o love to me,
Oh! shall I ever see thee more,
   Dear land ayont the sea!

May Heaven grant me this request
   Before the day I dee,
To see the land I love the best,
   My birthplace o’er the sea;
And oh! methinks I would be blest,
   When soars my spirit free,
To ken my body yet would rest
At hame ayont the sea. [page 27]


Oh, weel I loe the Scottish tongue,
   The language o’ my hame,
An’ weel I loe a sang that’s sung,
   In praise o’ Scotland’s fame,
It mak’s me think o’ happy days
   An’ scenes o’ beauty rare,
There’s something in my heart that says:
   There’s nae lan’ half sae fair!

     CHORUS.—My heart is Scotland’s yet,
                            Though I bide ower the sea:
                         Dear land, I’ll ne’er forget,
                            The land sae dear tae me!

When travellin’ in a foreign lan’
   I hear a Scottish voice,
Instinctively I gie my han’,
   An’ baith o’ us rejoice;
An’ then we crack o’ Scotland’s fame,
   Recite her battles ower,
An’ feel we yet could daur the same
   Oor faithers daur’d before.—CHO.

Oh, Scotland is a bonnie place,
   Wi’ scenery sublime;
Whaur Nature smiles wi’ fairest face
   That stan’s the test o’ time!
Each mountain, river, loch, an’ glen,
   Are tu’ o’ storied fame;
Wha reads the history o’ her men
   Can ne’er forget their name!—CHO.

In every lan’ roun’ a’ the earth
   Are leal hearts true tae thee;
An’ prood are they tae own their birth
   Ayont the wide saut sea,
Whaur towers the mountains bold an’ gran’
   Like guardians o’ the free,—
Oh, here’s my heart, an’ there’s my han’,
   Dear Scotland, aye tae thee!—CHO. [page 28] 


Oh! dinna hide the heart-love,
   Speak it oot!—tell it oot!
A’ guid thochts come frae above,
   O’ that there is nae doot!

Whan the heart wi’ love is fu’
   Rinnin’ ower!—rinnin’ ower!
Let some draps like Heaven’s dew,
   Wat some wee thirsty flower!

Licht the sunshine o’ yer face,
   Wi’ a smile!—wi’ a smile!
Gie nae sorrow there a place
   Life’s happiness to spoil!

Angry words cut like a sword,
   Brither, mine!—sister, mine!
Speak the honest, kindly word,
   To mak’ leal hearts entwine!

Life at best is unco short,
   Mak’ it guid!—mak’ it guid!
Hurtin’ feelin’s is nae sport,
   Aft causin’ hearts to bluid!

Lift the fallen, shield the weak,
   A’ ye can!—a’ ye can!
Aye some word o’ comfort speak,
   To cheer your brither man! [page 29] 


“Now, why do Scotchmen use the Thistle
As emblem of their country dear?
A useless plant, with many a bristle,
   Once scarce can touch without a fear!

“There must be some good cause, I gather,
   Why such a flow’r should be their pride;”
I ask’d the question of my father,
   But he my ignorance did chide!

“My boy, let history truly tell,
   Of by gone years of war and strife,
When noble sires fought long and well,
   And for their country gave their life!

“O’er flood and field, o’er brake and fen,
   The fierce invader sought out land;
Out-numbered were our gallant men,
   But, ah! they made a noble stand!

“One morn, before the break of day,
   Our foes crept near our slumb’ring camp;
They might by stealth have won the day,
   Did not one on a Thistle stamp!

“A cry of pain our sentries heard,
   A quick alarm then was given,
At once each gleaming sword was bar’d,
   And backward Scotland’s foes were driven!

“Since then the Thistle is our pride,
   ‘Gae, touch me if you daur,’ it says;
And Scotchmen true, where’er they ‘bide,
   Revere the Thistle all their days!” [page 30]


I like to HEAR my mither-tongue
   When far awa’ frae hame,
I’m fond o’ ilka sang that’s sung
   That has a Scottish name!
The dear auld Doris is to me
   Familiar frae my birth,
Sae tender, couthie, kind, an’ free,
   The sweetest notes o’ earth!

I like to SPEAK my mither-tongue,
   Gae wander where I will,
When a’ restraint frae me is flung,
   My heart then has its fill!
The English tongue may rule the lan’,
   The Scotch commands the heart—
I’d rather lose my guid richt han’
   Than frae the Doric part!

I like my mither-tongue to SING
   The sangs I lo’e sae dear,
Youth’s early scenes they seem to bring
   Life’s riper years to cheer;
Sweet memories a’ come back to me,
   O mither, love, an’ hame;
The dear auld land I ne’er may see,
   Yet love it a’ the same! [page 31]


A bonnie sicht it is to see
   A bairnie “toddlin’ hame,”
Wi’ outstretched airms an’ muckle glee,
   It lisps its faither’s name!

In a guid sense we’re a’ like weans,
Toddlin’ heavenward hame!
Stap clear o’ a’ life’s stum’lin stanes
   As ye gang “toddlin’ hame!”

Wale oot the flowers alang life’s way—
   Dae richt, an’ daur the blame,
Mak’ life be as a simmer’s day—
   Year in, year oot, the same!

Some folks hae joy frae morn’ to nicht,
   Cheerily, “toddling-hame;”
‘Mang hope, an’ happiness, an’ licht,
   They wale their fitstaps hame!

Ithers seem fash’d wi’ doots an’ pain,
   As they gang hirplin’ hame!
Like some wee, puir, forsaken wean,
   That’s tint its faither’s name!

Some reach their hame afore midday,
   Whan’ mornin’ glories bloom;
Some tread a lang and thorny way
   Afore they reach the tomb!

Oor Faither waits ayont life’s stream,
   An’ welcomes a’ the same;
The love licht in His e’e doth gleam
To see us “toddlin’ hame!” [page 32]


Back to bonnie Scotland,
   Ower the wide saut sea;
Yonder are the hill taps,
   Dear as life to me!
Back to kith and kindred,
   Hame again at last,
Joy and sorrow mingled,
   Memories o’ the past!

     CHORUS.—Back to Bonnie Scotland,
                             Ower the wide saut sea;—
                          Back to hame an’ lov’d ones,
                             Dear as life to me!

I am almost speechless
   Wi’ a gratefu’ joy,
To see the scenes again
   I saw when but a boy;
Bonnie purple heather
   Crowns the rugged hills,
Scenes o’ youth an’ gladness,
   A’ my bosom thrills!—CHO.

Back to bonnie Scotland,
   A’ my dreams come true,
Toil an’ care forgotten,
   Wi’ a glint o’ you!
Tears runnin’ ower my cheek
   But no wi’ dool an’ pain;
My heart is in a lowe,
   To meet wi’ frien’s again!—CHO. [page 33]


“AH, me!ah, me!
          An’ maun I dee,
Sae far frae kith an’ kin?
          How proof I’d be,
          If spar’d tae see
The lan’ ma heart bides in!

          “I’ve wannert far,
          In peace an’ war,
An’ fought for Scotlan’s Queen,
          Yet here I dee,
          Sae far frae thee,—
Saut tears fill up my e’en.

          “Dear freens an’ kind,
          Please bear in mind,
An’ send this message bame:
          My mither dear
         Wad like tae hear—

          ‘Mid friends’ sad sighs
          He clos’d his eyes,
And pass’d from earth to Heav’n;
          Yet, e’en in death,
          With latest breath,
His thoughts to “HAME” were giv’n. [page 34]


(Lamebth of Granny-Auld Kirk.)

Oh! the auld Psalms o’ David, fareweel! fareweel!
   They’re no near guid enough for us noo!
The Kirk has decreed they may gang in the creel,—
   An’ the auld maun gie place to the new;
The auld folk may weep, an’ the young folk may smile,
   An’ the Session look pale wi’ dismay,
For the Kirk has contriv’d to woo us wi’ guile,—
   The compilers hae had their ain way!

Oh! the auld Psalms o’ David, fareweel! fareweel!
   An’ the news gangs sae sair to my heart—
The folks never were askit how they might feel,
   Wi’ the auld Psalms o’ David to pairt!
The “Selections” are no like the Psalms we ken,
   O’ “the text” they’ve made wonnerful free!
Nor hae we yet learn’d to “sing” the Amen—
   We ne’er heard it like that yont the sea!

Oh! the auld Psalms o’ David, fareweel! fareweel!
   They were Scotland’s best freen in the ast,—
The bluid o’ the Martyrs are in them, I feel,
   An’ their power to convert will aye last!
Evolution is up—or DOWNWARD—they say,
   Is the Kirk purer noo than ‘twas then?
The precepts and doctrines o’ grandfather’s day
   Built up kirk-going, God-fearing men!

Beware! the “thin end o’ the wedge,” as they say,—
   For the rest o’ the Psalms will go next!
The Bible itself will be altered some day,
   Till we scarcely can find oot a text!
The Ministers, surely, should be on oor side,
   An’ frown on this strange innovation;
An’ dinna gie way to guile, fashion, an’ pride,
   That bodes the doon-fa’ o’ a nation! [page 35]


There’s naething in life so entrancing,
   An’ sae fu’ o’ endearment to me,
As Mary’s sweet smile when advancing,
   An’ the blink o’ her bonnie blue e’e!

CHORUS.—The blink o’ her bonnie blue e’e
                     Is mair than earth’s riches to me,
                        I’m aye weel content
                        While on me is spent
                     The blink o’ her bonnie blue e’e!

Her voice is like music frae Heaven,
   An’ her lips like June rose-buds to see;
To love an’ distraction I’m driven
   By the blink o’ her bonnie blue e’e!—CHO.

The cares o’ this life are engrossing,
   But forgot when she smiles upon me,
My bark’s a stormy sea tossing,
   Guided safe by the blink o’ her e’e!—CHO.

At last, when life’s voyage is over,
   I’ll lay me at peace doon to dee,
If ower me I then may discover
   Love’s-licht in her bonnie blue e’e!—CHO. [page 36]


Here’s a sang to the lads wi’ the kilts,
   The bonnet, the plaid, an’ the feather,
For in battle their courage ne’er wilts,
   Nor care they a preen for the weather!
      Wi’ a charge o’ cauld steel
      They wad face man or deil,
The sonsie braw sons o’ the heather!

To see oor braw Hielan’ lads drillin’
   Mak’s me think o’ the lan’ ‘yont the sea,
My heart swells fu’ big wi’ its feelin’,
   When I think they wad fecht, win, or dee!
      Wi’ a charge o’ cauld steel
      They wad mak’ their toes reel,
An’ be gled aff the field for to flee!

Should invaders set fit on oor soil,
   They wad think they’d stappit on thistles,
For oor lads wad soon mak’ them recoil
   At the point o’ polish’d steel bristles!
      At the touch o’ cauld steel,
      They wad mak’ them a’ squeal
An’ beware Scotch-Canadian thistles!

Feth, oor braw Hielan’ sodgers sae fine,
   Will yet bring Young Canada glory,
They are sons o’ the men o’ lang syne
   That focht on auld Scotlan’s fields gory!
      When they charge wi’ cauld steel,
      Traitors, rebels, shall feel
That fetchin’ wi’ them is sheer folly!

Hurrah for kilts, bonnet, an’ feather,
   An’ the bra, strappin’ lads on the field,
They carena for wind or for weather,
   And at fetchin’ they never can yield!
      For shouther to shouther,
      Wi’ shell, shot an’ pouther
They wad soon clear their foes aff the field! [page 37]


Gie a Scotchman a guid cog o’ brose,
   Wi’ milk just new drawn frae the coo’,
Fethye’ll no see him turn up his nose,
   But tak’ them, an’ then smack his moo’!

CHORUS—Brose, parritch, kail, haggis an’ bannocks,
                      Are dainties abune a’ compare!
                   Nae English, French, Yankees or Canucks,
Couldmak’ such a gran’ bill o’ fare!

Guidparritch for weans is sae healthy,
   It mak’s them grow strong, fat an’ weel,
Dyspeptics are aye ‘mang the wealthy,—
   They eat what wad sicken an eel!—CHO.

Noo, what is sae guid as Scotch kail,
   Wi’ carrots, an’ turnips, an’ leeks;
Hielan’ men are braw, hearty an’ hale—
   Yet gang a’ the year without breeks!p—CHO.

But the haggis is king o’ the table,—
   A Scotchman’s maisttoothfu’ delight,
By dining on that he is able
   To match onytwa in a fight!—CHO.

When spying for game in Glen Sannox,
Ahint a wheenstanes on my knees,
What’s sweeter than crumpin’ oat bannocks,
   An’ eating a whang o’ guid cheese?—CHO.

Brose, parritch, kail, haggis an’ bannocks
   Wad mak’ lean consumptives grow fat,
Though they’d sleep oot at nicht in hammocks,
   They’d ne’er be a bit waur o’ that!—CHO.

Then gieusoor dainty Scotch farin’,
   We’ll honour the auld muckle pat!
For pastry an’ pies we’re no carin’,
   Scotch laddies are no built wi’ that!—CHO. [page 38]



Ere the weans gang aff to bed,
     Gie a guid-nicht kiss!
Whan their evenin’ prayer is said,
     Gie a guid-nicht kiss!
As you pree each ruby moo’
And caress each bonnie bro’,
Say a kindly word an’ true,
     Wi’ a guid-nicht kiss!

As the claes a’ roon ye hap
     Gie a guid-nicht kiss!
They will sleep as sound’s a tap
     Wi’ a guid-nicht kiss!
An’ they’ll dream that angels fair,
In that “HAPPY LAND” up there,
Where there’s neither-drool nor care,
     Gie a guid-nicht kiss!

Ah! the time may sune come roon,
     When your love they’ll miss;
Get the warld’s cauldrift froon
     ‘Stead o’ smile an’ kiss!
But, until the day they dee,
They will bless your memorie,
For the years they spent wi’ thee,
     An’ your guid-nicht kiss!

Mind to oil the wheels o’ life
     Wi’ a guid-nicht kiss!
What a cure for care and strife
     IS a guid-nicht kiss!
Kissin’s good for young or auld,
For the grey heids or the bauld,—
Keep your hearts frae growin’ cauld
     Wi’ a guid nicht kiss! [page 39] 


I took my way ayont the sea
   Wi’ thoughts on pleasure bent,
Nigh twenty years had gane ower me
   Since frae my hame I went.

Bit noo I’m here I stranger feel
   Than if I were abroad;
I find the spots I kent sae weel
   Ca’d some new fangl’d road!

I dauner up an’ doon the street
   Where aince I used to play,
An’ scarce a kent face dae I meet
   The lee-lang simmer’s day!

My heart is sair—I canna tell
   The reason why it’s sae—
An’ aftentimes I ask mysel’
   Why do I feel sae wae?

I ask for Jock,an’ Tam’ an’ Will—
   My cronie’s a’ o’ yore:
Some gane awa’—some cauld an’ still—
   An’ few are to the fore!

Imagination’s a’ at faut
   I find oot to my cost—
For Time his subtle change has wrought,
   Kent faces a’ are lost!

I pictur’d them as when I last
   Beheld each bonnie bro’,—
The lads an’ lassies o’ the past
   Are men an’ women noo!

An’ some had even quite forgot
   That ever I had been,
Until we minded o’ a lot
   O’ scenes we each had seen! [page 40] 

Then had we mony a heart laugh
   At a’e thing an’ anither,
An’, as a social cup we’d quaff,
   We felt each like a brither.

We took a trip far doon the Clyde
   Amang the hills an’ heather,
‘Twas then I thocht I’d like to bide
   In Scotlan’ a’ thegither!

The hills were just the very same,
   The lochs an’ glens sae bonnie;
I felt ainche mair I was at hame—
An’ proud o’ hame as ony.

Oh! Scotlan’, though shalt ever be
   A patriot’s boast an’ glory;
I’ll brag o’ thee when ower the sea,
   An’ aften tell this story!


These were the last words of the Prince Consort, the husband of our beloved Queen, as she knelt by his bedside, soothing his last moments be her kindly care and caresses, which he lay dying of a fever:—

“My dear little wife!” he feebly said,
As she helped to pillow his fever’d head,
And their eyes then met in a last fond look,
Ere the light of earth his eyes forsook;
And she wept, all thought she was England’s Queen,—
What a touching tribute, this deathbed scene!

Ah! there yet shall come such another day,
When our widowed Queen shall pass away;
Two hearts that on earth were sorely riven,
Shall be knit again in the joys of heaven;
Reward shall be hers for those widowed years,
And her grave be wet with a nation’s tears! [page 41] 


Life is a hard an’ thorny way,
   As maist o’ mortals ken,
But nicht o’ertake the langest day,
   A boon to workin’ men;
Be brave, an’ do the best you can,
   Act well your noble part,
God helps the honest workin’ man
   That has a loving heart!

CHORUS.—Gang hame at nicht to wife an’ weans,
                       They’ll lichten a’ yer care;
                     Their love is mair than golden gains,—
                        Ye’ll find life’s sunshine there!

Our Saviour said when He was here:
   “They scarce can enter in
To Heaven’s gates who value dear
   The warld’s gear to win;”
Ye needna’ think that wealthy folk
   Ha’e nane o’ life’s turmoil,
Their riches aft are like a yoke,
   Far waur to bear than toil!—CHO.

Ilk ane kens best his weakest spot,
   Where Satan tempts him sair,
But envy not your neighbours lot
   And ye’ll escape his snare!
There’s folk at hame your presence miss—
   They’ll meet you at the door;
Toil on for them an’ God will bless
   Your basket an’ your store!—CHO.

Gang hame to wife an’ weans, dear man—
   At hame you’re crown’d a king!
Make hame as cheerfu’ as you can,
   Baith whistle, dance and sing!
Your children, while they live, shall bless
   The memory of these years;
True love at hame is sure redress
   For a’ life’s toils and tears!—CHO. [page 42]


 (May be sung to “KELVINGROVE”)

I’m happy as a king when at
          Oor ain fireside,
Wi’ Jean an’ a’ the bairns at
         Oor ain fireside;
A’ earth’s cares an’ worries flee,
Wi’ a lammie on my knee,
As we laugh an’ sing wi’ glee,
          At oor fireside!

There’s comfort and content when at
          Oor ain fireside,—
The bairnies playin’ wi’ the cat
          At oor fireside!
They’re to pity or to blame
That ha’e nae got such a hame,
For it’s mair than wealth or fame,
          A guid fireside!

We dinna froon or fret when at
          Oor ain fireside,—
But kind an’ couthie be when at
          Oor ain fireside;
An’ nae danger do we fear
As we nestle close an’ near,
An’ aye ca’ each ither “dear!”
          At oor fireside!

We never want to be awa’
          Frae oor fireside,
Ootside attractions never draw
          Frae oor fireside,
For we bear each ither’s load,
An’ put aye oor trust in God,
Till we gang the lang, lang road,
          Frae oor fireside! [page 43]


I ken a lassie bright and fair,
Wi’ gowden locks o’ sun-kiss’d hair
That I wad like my lot to share,
     An’ be my bonnie doo!

     CHORUS.—My ain, my bonnie doo, 
                            Wi’ heart sae kind an true;
                         I’ll love thee till the day I dee,
                            My ain, my bonnie doo!

We cleekit doon yon flowery lane,
Her wee sma’ han’ in mind I’d ta’en,
An’ telt her ower and ower agin,
     She was my bonnie doo!—CHO.

But ne’er a word she spak’ to me,
Jist let a tear drap frae her e’e,
Wi’ joy I felt maist like to dee,
    To win my bonnie doo!—CHO.

My han’ she grippit like a vice,
An’ oh! the look she gied was nice;
I kiss’d her aince, an’ maybe thrice,
     My ain, my bonnie doo!—CHO.

Blythe birds were singin’ on the tree,
The sun was shinin’ on the sea,
An’ a’ the world seem’d bright to me,
     An’ mine—my bonnie doo!—CHO. [page 44]


Oh! it nearly tak’s my breath awa’
   To get a letter frae hame,
An’ afore I read a word or twa,
   I can guess the sender’s name!
This ane, I ken, is frae Maggie dear,
   The lassie I loe sae weel,
An’ while I’m readin’ she’s standin’ near,
   Her presence I seem to feel!

CHORUS—It’s nice to get a letter frae hame,
                       Fu’ o’ love, an’ joy, an’ cheer;
                    I needna open’t to ken the name
                       O’ the lassie I loe sae dear!

It minds me o’ happy days gane by
   When we ran aboot the braes,
I scarcely can keep my winkers dry
   At the thoughts o’ bygane days!
The letter it scents o’ summer flowers,
   And the saut sea’s caller air,
My heart gaes back to the twilight oors,
   That Maggie an’ I spent there!—CHO.

The best ane o’ a’ I gat the day,
   It made me sae happy an’ glad,
It told o’ a ship that sail’d away
   Wi’ a lassie to meet her lad!
Noo, I maun awa’ to meet my ain,
   My Maggie frae ower the sea!
I’ll marry her noo, an’ aye be fain,
   For she has been true to me!—CHO. [page 45] 


Across the wide Atlantic sea
   Our steamer speeds her way,
Great billows rolling grand and free
Rest not by night or day.

At last the land recedes from sight,—
   The great new land of hope,
Where enterprise and honest might
   Find fair and ample scope.

A week has pass’d, yet sea and sky
   Seem all of earth to me,
Until at last the welcome cry
   Is heard with joy and glee:—

“Land, ho!—land, ho!”—a sailor cries,
   But naught to us is seen;
An hour or two, and then our eyes
   Behold the welcome scene:—

Great headlands rise, like sentries bold,
   Or guardians of the land;
Their tops, like helmets, shine with gold
   In sunset hues so grand!

Still on we speed, with hope and joy
   Our hearts feel like to sing!
Our thoughts on “home” find sweet employ
   As early scenes up-spring!

The fair green hills of Ireland rise,
   Resplendent to the view,
And seem an earthly Paradise
   To loving hearts and true!

‘Tis hard to leave the deck to-night,
   I scarce can go to sleep;
I toss and dream, till morning light
   Comes shining o’er the deep!

Now, dear old Scotia’s mountains rise
   As up the Clyde we steam,
Like friends of old they cheer our eyes,
   Or happy pleasant dream! [page 46] 

At last we reach the same old pier
   Where years ago we parted;
Here once we wept, now joy’s glad tear
   From loving eyes has started!

Oh, friends of early days, and “home”
   Of childhood’s happy years!
My thoughts are yours where’er I roam,
   For you my prayers and tears!


The licht o’ the morning should see us a-steer
   The wark o’ the day to begin,
Bit afore we commence our hearts it wad cheer
   To speak to our Faither abune;
Each day has its cares, an’ its trials, an’ toil,
   Its pleasures, its praise, an’ its blame,
As dew to the grass, or as rain to the soil—
   God’s blessin’ afore we lea’ hame! 

Devotion uplifts us on wings o’ the dove,
   An’ sets a’ our hearts in a flame,
To feel that our Faither is watchin’ above
   An’ kens us each ane by our name!
It mak’s us feel strong for the battle o’ life,
   An’ gies us baith courage and vim,
To fight wi’ temptation, an’ win in the strife,
   Prayer brings us aye nearer to Him!

An’ when we come hame, ere we gang to oor bed,
   Oor prayers to forget is a shame,
For in His Guid Book how aften ‘tis said:
   “I loe them that ca’ on My name!”
“The secret o’ God is wi’ them that Him fear,”
   He’ll shield them frae a’ Satan’s blame;
An’ whan we lie doon for to dee He’ll be near
   To bring His ain bairnies a’ hame! [page 47] 


Oh! the bonnie, bonnie hills
   Wi’ their taps sae green an’ high,
An’ the music o’ the rills
   As they rin’ doon frae the sky;
Where the lammies skip an’ play,
   An’ the rabbits rin sae slee,
A’ the lee lang simmer’s day,—
   Oh! the bonnie hills for me!

Oh! the bonnie, bonnie lake,
   In the bosie o’ the hill,
Where the siller fish we take
   As reward o’ time and skill;
We never seemed to weary,
   Though the fish were unco shy,
An’ the scene was sometimes eerie,
   As the nicht was drawin’ nigh!

Oh! the bonnie, bonnie glens
   Where the shepherd builds his cot,
An’ the wee herd laddie kens
   Where to find the coolest spot;
An’ he tak’s na count o’ time,
   For the gloaming bides sae lang,
Then he gangs hame wi’ some rhyme
   O’ a well-kent Scottish sang!

Oh! the cool an’ shady wuds,
   Wi’ the birds a’ singin’ sweet,
Where ye canna see the cluds
   An’ are safe frae rain or heat;
Where we ate oor halesome meal
   An’ the mid-day hour beguil’d,
Or the stately trees we climbed
   For the nuts a’ growin’ wild!

Oh! the bonnie, bonnie sea,
   Wi’ its gold an’ siller sheen,
An’ the sichts sae dear to me
   O’ the auld familiar scene;
Though I’m far ayont the sea
  Frae the lan’ that gied me birth,
Yet these scenes are dear to me
   As the sweetest things o’ earth! [page 48]


Love’s youthfu’ years are swift an’ sweet,
   An’ fu’ o’ hope sae cheerie, O!
Whan heart wi’ heart in union meet
   O’ love they never wearie, O!
This life to them is naught but bliss,
   To each they’re a’ that’s dearie, O!
Whan vows are answer’d wi’  kiss
   How can this life be drearie, O?

CHORUS.—Noo, dinna fash yer head awa’,
                       Wi’ cares an’ worries dearie, O!
                     Whan Love is king just mind his law
                        O’ that you’ll never wearie, O!

Love rules the warld, frae en’ to en’,
‘Mang ilka tribe an’ nation, O!
God’s precious boon on earth to men,
   Nae matter what their station, O!
Wi’ Love—we never can be poor!
   Nor buy it wi’ earth’s treasures, O!
Love’s kingdom ever shall endure,
   Unstinted are its pleasures, O!—CHO.

Bind hearts wi’ Love sae firm an’ fast,
   Nae bands like His can tether, O!
Love’s sunnie smiles through life should last,
   And brave life’s wintry weather, O!
Our riper years shall fruitful be,
   An’ happy a’ thegither, O!
It’s time enough to wish to dee
   When ower us grows the heather, O!—CHO. [page 49] 


He stood at a crossing late at night,
   The wind was chilly and keen,
No use for him the electric light,
   Nor the light of day, I ween;
His face was pinch’d, and palli, and sad,
   His clothing tatter’d, and bare,
A half-starved dog for a guide he had,
   His wealth—a Cremona rare!

He would not part with that bosom-friend,
   A relic of brighter days,
Though seldom a dollar had he to spend,
   Since he trod misfortune’s ways;
He came from Italia’s sunny clime,
   Exil’d from Fortune and home—
But love of musical art sublime
   Follows her children that roam!

He played from “the masters” rare and true,
   But not with the aid of book,—
Yet every note of their works he knew,—
   You could see it in his look;
For, though his eyes were diseas’d and dark
   The eyes of his soul were bright,
And the tender tones of “Vital Spark,”
   Drew a crowd that chilly night!

As the grateful audience prais’d his skill,
   The dog whin’d a meaning rhyme.
Their pockets and purse-strings slack’d at will,
   Tin-cup got nickel and dime!
Enough for present needs—bed and board—
   For master and dog were got;
The piercing winds, like a two-edg’d sword,
   Drove them home to humble cot!

The last performance he play’d that night,
   A death-chill had laid him low,
But when the fever was at its height,
   He grasp’d both fiddle and bow:
He made the Cremona almost sing
   Sweeter notes than soaring lark,—
While his soul went forth to meet the King
   To the music of “Vital Spark”! [page 50]


Fifty years of wedded life,
   Half a century of bliss,
Since we first were man and wife,
   What a consummation this!

Through the sunshine and the shower,
   Bound by golden bands in one,
Hand-in-hand in darkest hour,
   We the race of life have run.

True to vows of early years,
   Faithful to each other’s love,
Yet with tenderness and tears,
Ripening for the courts above.

Years of joy, and love, and peace,
   Full of happiness and trust;
Learning, as the years increase,
   God is ever wise and just.

Heart-to-heart, and hand-in-hand,—
   Fair or stormy weather!
Now! we near God’s Beulah-land,—

Ah! at last, His voice will  call,
   One or other hence away;
Still remaining ONE through all,


She had crossed the line of three-score and ten,
   For her last birthday was seventy-four,
Yet she thought of her childhood’s days, and when,
   As a babe, she was rock’d to sleep once more!
And it seem’d to soothe her—the very thought
   That she still had the cradle used of yore,
So out from the lumber-room it was brought,
   And she playfully rock’d it on the floor!

The “style” of this cradle was “out of date”—
   Nigh a hundred years had it service seen—
It was deep and wide, and its size was great,
   As the cribs of the olden time have been!
But many a handsome babe had slept there,
   As cosy and warm as infant could be;
While mothers had rocked, oft a fervent prayer
   Had been breathed beside it on bended knee!

See! a big tear drops from her sad blue eye
   As she thinks of the children once she bore,
Who slept in that cradle in years gone by,
   But now “rest in peace” on the other shore!
A glow of affection swept over her heart,
   As she ponder’d on years of motherly care,—
And she felt as if she never could part
   With that cheery-wood cradle standing there!

She look’d on the cradle and feebly said:
   “We both have grown old together, you see;
I wish from my heart that when I am dead,
   A coffin from this might be made for me;
I think I could rest more peacefully there,
   The long sleep of death would be sweet to me;
And ‘mother’ would wake me in heaven so fair,
   With kisses and smiles as it used to be!”

Her wish was granted; her coffin was made,
   From the cheery-wood crib that used to be;
And in it a pillow of down was laid,
   For the head from worry and care set free!
There she looked so calm, and sweet, and still,—
   ‘Mong the flowers and lilies her children brought;
She seemed so content, for she had her will,—
   To sleep in her cheery-wood cradle cot! [page 52]


(Our Wee Baby!)

He sits upon a cushion’d throne—
     This uncrown’d king!
He rules a kingdom all his own—
     This uncrown’d king!
He is worshipp’d night and day,
And has all his own sweet way,
For we never say him—Nay!—
     This uncrown’d king!

His subjects are his faithful slaves—
     This uncrown’d king!
Nor murmur when he misbehaves—
     This uncrown’d king!
All he sees he claims and keeps,
We must labour while he sleeps,
And get frighten’d when he weeps—
     This uncrown’d king!

He speaks a tongue like ancient Greek—
     This uncrown’d king!
Wise sages hush to hear him speak—
     This uncrown’d king!
Though his words they cannot spell,
Of his wisdom they must tell,
Or, he’ll answer with a yell!—
     This uncrown’d king!

No household is complete, without
An uncrown’d king!
We dearly love to hear the shout
     Of our wee king!
And we call him “sweet” and “dove!”
For he rules our hearts with love,
Like the Great High King above,
     Our Baby King! [page 53]


Not where deadly battles rattle
   Is the only hero ground,
Nor upon the field of battle
   Are the most of heroes found;
There are lives pure, noble and great,
   Yet we never hear their name,
Martyrs to duty—yet their fate
   Illumes not the page of fame!

Labor’s pay is meagre and scant,
   The poor are but slaves to wealth;
The hardest wrought know most of want,—
   May starve when broken in health;
Dives still looks at the palace gate
   Where Lazarus moaning lies,
Nor seeks to ease his brother’s fate—
   Through neglect and want he dies!

In the daily struggle for bread
   There are scenes of direst woe,
The arching heart and throbbing head
   Doth company keep, we know;
Life’s great battle goes bravely on,—
   We hear but a smothered sigh,
The cross is kiss’d—the crown is won—
   As the vanquish’d heroes die!

Oh! there are lives so fraught with grief
   And the sum of human woe,
In sleep alone is found relief
   From the cares that overflow;
Yet on they plod from day to day,
   Treading the Slough of Despond,
Hoping ‘gainst hope—but to give way,
   To the aching void beyond!

Oh! for the heaven beyond earth’s cares,
   The love that dispels our fears,
God’s answer to our fervent prayers,
   And the Hand that wipes all tears;
The more of trial on earth we know,
   The greater our joy in heaven,
Our empty hearts shall then o’erflow—
   The CROWN for the CROSS be given! [page 54] 


The saddest word we ever hear,
Full-fraught with sorrow, hope, and fear;
The fount of many a bitter tear:
   Farewell! Farewell!

REFRAIN,—Farewell! Farewell!
                      Ah! who can tell
                         What bitter tears,
                          What hopes and fears,
                      Surround thy spell?
                      Sad word: “FAREWELL!”

As, branch by branch, the family tree
Is snapped and floated o’er life’s sea,
How sad a parent’s heart must be,
   To say: “Farewell!” “Farewell!”—

How sad for loving friends to part
For distant scenes—so wide apart—
That memories must suffice the heart
   That says: “Farewell!” “Farewell!”

How sad to hear the deep-ton’d bell
Ring out a dear friend’s funeral knell,
And feel your very heart-strings swell
   To say: “Farewell!” “Farewell!”

When we have said our last “Farewell,”
And gone the ranks of heaven to swell,
Rejoice to know—Death breaks the spell—
   “All’s well! all’s well!”

REFRAIN,—With God to dwell,
                         No more, “Farewell”
                            No more sad tears!
                            No doubts! no fears!
                         Each tongue shall tell:
“‘Tis well! ‘Tis well!” [page 55]


Birth of a soul! what mystery
Enwraps thy silent history,—
     In dumb amaze
     We stand and gaze,
Own baffled with thy mystery!

Oh, Love! thou art a mystery,
Yet old as earth’s dim history,—
     From birth till death
     We feel thy breath,
Oh, wistful, blissful, mystery!

Oh, Life! thou art a mystery,
Each living soul a history!
     Of hopes and fears,
     Of joys and tears,—
An ever present mystery

Oh, heart of man! thy history
Is oft enshrin’d in mystery,—
     Yet God can scan
     The heart of man
And flood with light its mystery!

Oh, Death! thou art a mystery,
Who knows thy after-history?
     From heaven or hell
     None come to tell
The living of thy mystery.

Oh, Lie beyond! Oh, mystery!
We yet shall know thy history,—
     So live each day,
That, come what may,
Our souls shall fear no mystery.

Oh, realms of bliss! what mystery
Enshrouds thy sphere and history,—
     No finite eyes
     Can pierce the skies
To scan thy blissful mystery. [page 56] 

Oh, God! Thou art a mystery,
Thy love a world’s history,—
     Most humbly we
     Shall worship Thee,
Till Thou shalt solve all mystery!


     The telephone
      In merry tone,
Rang “Tinkelty tinkelty-tink!”
     I put my ear
     Close up to hear,
And what did I hear, do you think?

“Papa, hello!
     ‘Tis me, you know!”—
The voice of my own little Miss;—
     “You went away
From home to-day.
But you never gave me—a kiss!

     “It was a mistake,
     I was not awake,
Before you went out of the house;
     I think that a kiss
     Will not be amiss
If I give it—sly as a mouse!

     “So here goes, Papa,
     And one from Mamma,
And another when you can come home:
     Just answer me this,
     Is it nice to kiss
When you want through the dear telefome?”

     “Hello!” I replied,
     With fatherly pride,
“I’ve got them as snug as can be;
     I’ll give them all back,
     With many a smack,


When misfortune attends you let this be your cry:
   Never say “Die!” Never say “Die!”
Nothing comes without energy, patience, and pluck,—
Do not stay in the mud and you’ll never get stuck,—
Trusting more to yourself than to chance or good luck:
   Never say “Die!” Never say “Die!”

Don’t say “Wait a minute! but at once say “I’ll try!”
   Never say “Die!” Never say “Die!”
Put your hands to the plough-shafts and do not look back,
Better wear out than rust though you earn not a plack,
They will yet call you “Mr.” who know dub you “Jack!
   Never say “Die!” Never say “Die!”

Don’t imagine when sick that you’re going to die,
   Never say “Die!” Never say “Die!”
Take a rest and be still, it will do you more good,
Than dosing your stomach with physic and food,
Nature’s laws are the best and should be understood,—
   Never say “Die!” Never say “Die!”

Should love e’er beguile you don’t give way to a sigh,
   Never say “Die!” Never say “Die!”
Just appear to be careless and “let well alone!”
She may mourn in your absence when chances seem gone,
And the next time you ask her all shyness be flown,
   Never say “Die!” Never say “Die!”

If your life be well spent you’ll be ready to die,—
   Ready to die! ready to die!
It will come just as easy as going to sleep,
Those who trust in the Lord He has promised to keep;
As you live—as you sow—you shall certainly reap
   Rewards will be paid when you die! [page 58]


Each grain of sand by sounding sea,
Each trembling leaf on quivering tree,
Each blade of grass on dewy lea,
   Speaks volumes of God’s love to me!

The pearls that deep in ocean lie,
The twinkling stars that gem the sky,
The sunbeams, caught from noontide’s eye,
   Direct my thoughts, oh God, to Thee!

The flowers that deck the fragrant dell,
And o’er me cast their beauty-spell,
I love them—for they seem to tell
   The story of God’s love to me! 

No matter where I wander free,
By river, lake, or boundless sea,
The touch of God’s dear hand I see,
   And know by these He loveth me!

Oh, God! Thou doest all things well,
Earth, sea and sky Thy wisdom tell,
In heaven what must it be to dwell
   For ever, O my God, with Thee! [page 59]


Oh, Niagara! as at thy brink I stand,
   My soul is filled with wonder and delight,
To trace in thee that wonder-working Hand,
   Whose hollow holds the seas in balance light

Worthy art thou to be a nation’s pride,—
   A patriot’s boast—a world’s unceasing wonder;
Like some bold monarch calling to thy side
   Subjects from every clime in tones of thunder!

Deep on my soul thy grandeur is impress’d,
   Thy awful majesty—thy mighty power—
Thy ceaseless tumult and thy great unrest,
   Like nations warring in dread conflict’s hour!

Rainbows of glory sparkly round thy shrine,
   Cresting thy waters with effulgence bright;
And in thy foaming currents intertwine
   Rare coruscations of commingl’d light!

Like roar of battle, or like thunder’s call,
   Thy deep-toned echoes roll with solemn sound!
Great pillar’d clouds thy vapors rise, and fall—
   Like sparkling pearls—upon the thirsty ground!

Rush on! rush on! in thy uncheck’d career,
   With avanlachic power thy course pursue;
While rending rocks quake as with mortal fear,
   And stand in awe to let thy torrents through!

Naught but the hand of God could stay thy course,
   Or drive thee back to Erie’s peaceful keep!
Then onward press with thy gigantic force,
   Till in Ontario’s bosom lull’d to sleep!

Emblem of Freedom! who would dare essay
To bar thy noisy progress to the sea?
Then onward press! while bord’ring nations pray
   For strength and wisdom to be great and free! [page 60]


Mother sleeps! tired hands are folded
   O’er her breast so still and cold;
White as marble statue moulded,
   Mother does not now look old!
Gone the wrinkles born of home-care,
   Clos’d the lips that spoke but love,
Hush’d the last faint words of pray’r,
Ere her soul took flight above.

Mother sleeps! no more the cooings
   Of her infant’s voice she hears,
Deaf her ears to all its wooings,
   Clos’d her eyes to love or tears;
Children gaze around in sorrow,
   Near the coffin father stands,
Thinking of the sad to-morrow,
   Blighted hopes and parted hands!

Mother sleeps! how still the dwelling,
   Once the scene of all her care,
Friends are weeping—hearts are swelling—
   Grief almost too much to bear;
Home is sad without a mother,
   Children miss her deeds of love,
Never can we find another
   Such as she where’er we rove!

Mother sleeps! the years are passing:—
   Wedded souls hold converse sweet,
Father—freed from cares harassing—
   Walks with her the golden street;
One by one we, too, may follow,
   Meet beneath Heaven’s azure dome;—
Hark! her voice sounds o’er the hollow!


What work are the poets doing?
   Teaching men to live;
Not like slaves with scourges driven,
But like men, with powers God-given,
Using them for God and heaven,
   Gaining while they give!

What work are the poets doing?
   Teaching men to think:
That this life is man’s probation,
Fitting for a nobler station,
Rising higher in creation,
   Up from Chaos’s brink!

What work are the poets doing?
   Teaching men to see:
God in Nature every hour,
Beauty in each leaf and flower
Wonders wrought by sun and shower,
   Winds, and waves, and sea!

What work are the poets doing?
   Teaching men to love:
Drawing nearer man to man,
Doing all the good we can,
Working out “the golden plan”
   Taught by God above!

What, then, are the poet’s wages?
   To be lov’d of men:
More than gold is approbation,
Praise inspires his emulation,—
Naught he cares for wealth or station,—
Contra—love of men!

Does the poet love his calling?
   Note his answer true:
“More than Orphir’s golden treasures,
More than earth’s alluring pleasures,—
Love I Musics rhythmic measures?
   More than life I do!” [page 62]


Sing me to sleep, mother,
   Sing me to sleep;
Sing me a song, mother,
   So I may weep!
I’ve been a wayward child,
Out in the world wild,
Love hath my heart beguil’d—
   Sing Love to sleep!

Sing me to sleep, mother,
   Croon me to sleep;
Hush me to sleep, mother,
   E’en tho’ I weep!
I’m not a girl now,
Care sits upon my brow,
Angels are weeping now,—
   Sorrow I reap!

Death is at hand, mother,
   Hush me to sleep;
Dark is the night, mother,
   Close to me keep!
Sing me a baby-song
Sweetly the notes prolong;
Far from life’s giddy throng,
   Dang’rous and deep!—

Gone now are care and pain,
   Dear summer hours!—
I am a child again,
   Gathering flowers!
Mother, dry up that tear!
Angels are hov’ring near,
Bidding me—“Never fear!”
   Sweet Eden bowers! [page 63]


Composed on seeing an artistic painting on the above subject, by G. A. Reid, R.C.A., Toronto, on exhibition in a shop-window on Yonge Street, Toronto, Canada.

Don’t mortgage the homestead, my brother,
   ‘Tis the greatest mistake of your life;
Take courage, and help one another,
   For the sake of your children and wife;
Far better a crust in contentment
   Than a mortgage and well-buttered bread;
Don’t risk a mortgagee’s resentment,
   He may yet make you wish you were dead.

Oh, don’t mortgage the homestead, my friend,
   Rather work like a slave and be free!
You will find this advice in the end
   Is the best that a friend could give thee;
Rise bright with the dawn of the morning,
   Let sweet hope cheer you on till the eve,
List’ not to the world’s proud scorning,
   Let them see that in God you believe.

Don’t mortgage your homestead, my neighbour,
   Hark! the voice of your own loving wife:—
“We now must dispense with hir’d labour,
   Let us pull well together through life;
Our children will soon be a help, dear,
   We’ll have no heavy mortgage to pay;
Let us leave well alone, never fear,
   I will help you by night and by day!”

Don’t mortgage your homestead, my brother,
   Do not risk all the savings of years,
And leave in the hands of another
   What has cost you toil, worry, and tears;—
Be a man!—your wife will adore you,
   Ne’er give up while you’ve courage and health;
You will find this good motto is true:
   ‘Tis the diligent hand maketh wealth! [page 64]


What inward pain we sometimes feel
   When we have been misunderstood,
How doth affection’s warmth congeal
   When ill intent’s coin’d out of good?
How many bleeding hearts there are
   Whose greatest bliss was doing good,
Yet for their love receiv’d a scar
   From dearest friend—MISUNDERSTOOD!

When death hath clos’d the eyes of one
   Whose heart beat ever for our good,
How sad to know, their setting sun
   Was dimm’d by us—MISUNDERSTOOD!
‘Tis then we feel the pain we gave
   A parent, friend, or neighbor good,
And grief o’erwhelms us like a wave,—
   Too late!  too late!—MISUNDERSTOOD!

Oh!  could we but live o’er the past,
   And weave our web of life once more,
Glad rays of sunshine would we cast
   Where doubt and darkness reign’d before!
Hope is not dead!—the Present lives!—
   Let us redeem it as we should;
The flower that’s crush’d more fragrance gives
   Than it lived—MISUNDERSTOOD!

But One there is who never fails
   To read the heart of man aright,
Though toss’d on life’s tempestuous gales,
   God will sustain us by His might!
Let all our aims in life be pure—
   Men may mis-judge—still cling good;
At last the victory shall be sure,
   And we shall then be—UNDERSTOOD! [page 65]


‘Tis sweet to sit in pensive mood,
‘Mid Nature’s grand, stern solitude,
Where warbling birds pour forth their lays,
In happy, joyous songs of praise.

Or watch some noble cat’ract bound
From giddy height to lowly ground,
Where echoes ring from peak to peak,
And God in Nature seems to speak.

With praise to God the woods resound,
Surrounding hills repeat the sound,
And in my heart an echo rings,
Which joy and consolation brings.

There doth my soul find sweet relief,
And gather strength for future grief;
For life’s stern duties now prepare,
By supplicating God in prayer.

Oh, God!  to be alone with Thee,
In Nature’s Temple—rich and free;
And for a time forget the strife
Of man with man—of Death with Life.

Oh, happy hour!  oh, sweet retreat!
With Thee, my Father, thus to meet;
And learn from Nature to adore
The God of Nature evermore! [page 66]


Friendship is a GOLDEN BAND
   Linking life with life,
Heart to heart, and hand to hand,
Antidote to strife.

Friendship is a SILKEN CORD
   Beautiful and strong,
Guarding, by each kindly word,
Loving hearts from wrong.

Friendship is a BEACON-LIGHT
   On life’s rocky shore,
Brightest in our darkest night
When the breakers roar.

Friendship is an IRON SHIELD
   Where life’s cruel darts
Ever may be forced to yield
Ere they wound true hearts.

Friendship is the GIFT OF GOD
   Freely to us given,
As the flowers that gem the sod,
   Or the light of heaven! [page 67] 


What sad and fateful words are these:
   Too late! too late! too late!
The bitter words that were our last,
The broken vows behind us cast,
The chance to do a kindness past,
   Too late! too late! too late!

What friendships true there might have been:
   Too late! too late! too late!
The trustfulness that once was ours,
The sweet delights of happy hours,
Have wither’d like last summer’s flowers,
   Too late! too late! too late!

‘Tis those who love that suffer most:
   Too late! too late! too late!
Tender hearts are soonest broken,
Careless words—how easy spoken—
Scorn exchanged for Love’s sweet token,
   Too late! too late! too late!

Give flowers and kindness are they be
   Too late! too late! too late!
While life, and health, and hope are mine,
Let friendship, love, and truth entwine,
Then dark Remorse will not be thine,
   Regrets may come too late! [page 68] 


When the world speaks falsely of you
   Live it down! live it down!
Let your every word and action
Illustrate a square transaction,
This be your best satisfaction—
   Live it down! live it down!

Should traducers base malign you,
   Live it down! live it down!
Soon they’ll hang their heads with shame,
Cease to trifle with your name,
Time will show where lies the blame,
   Live it down! live it down!

Let not spite or envy vex you,
   Live it down! live it down!
Build upon a safe foundation,—
Live within your means and station,—
Do the right and dare creation!
   Live it down! live it down!

If false friends betray—deceive you,
   Live it down! live it down!
Better now that you should sever
Friendships such as these forever,
Trusting to your own endeavour,
   Live it down! live it down!

Should misfortune e’er o’ertake you,
   Live it down! live it down!
Own up error or transgression,
Never be above confession,
Cower not beneath oppression,
   Fight it down! fight it down!

Heed not sneaking cowards’ railing,
   Live it down! live it down!
Stormy winds make fastest sailing!
Right is might and truth prevailing!
God above is never-failing!
   He is judge—let others frown! [page 69]


Let every man that has a vote,
     Vote for “Progress!”
Not for party, peace, or pleasure,
Not for favor, fame, or treasure,
Vote for every honest measure,—
     Vote for “Progress!”

Vote as if your vote might carry—
     Vote for “Progress!”
Franchise is a gift from heaven,
Sacred trust to manhood given,
Be not like dumb cattle driven,—
     Vote for “Progress!”

Vote for men above suspicion—
     Men of “Progress!”
No! not wire-pullers! nay forsooth
But men who from their early youth,
Lov’d Justice, Honour, God, and Truth,—
     Fought for “Progress!”

That man that sells his vote for gold
     Should be a slave!
What! sell thy birthright for a bribe,
And kinship claim with Esau’s tribe,
Such meanness we can scarce describe,—
     Both fool and knave!

Vote for your country, God, and home,
     And for “Progress!”
Don’t say—‘Let well enough alone!”
But kick aside each stumbling-stone;
As if this land were all your own,—
     Vote for Progress!” [page 70] 


Young Canada! Arise! Arise!
Let wisdom open wide your eyes,
Be lull’d by neither threats nor lies,
   Stand well the test of nations!

Though others sell their birthright cheap,
Be ours inviolate to keep
The rights and liberties we reap
   Through contact with great nations!

Be true country, Queen, and laws,
Defend the “Statutes” clause by clause,
Stand by the right and Freedom’s cause,
   A peer among the nations!

Our sires were men of noble birth,
‘Mong nations foremost on the earth,
Where mountains rise, and seas engirth
   The glad homes of free nations! 

Our heritage—from sea to sea—
A glorious home for men shall be,
As long as they shall dare be free,
   And stand among the nations!

Our boast shall be “The Maple Leaf!”
Our toil’s reward—the golden sheaf!
Enough for us, and for relief
   Of other poorer nations!

We envy not our neighbour’s land,
We’ll guard our own with sword in hand,
And by our attitude command
   Respect from other nations. [page 71] 


Where has the Old Year gone?
     Gone to join the mystic ages,
     One more leaf in history’s pages,
     To be read by fools and sages:
There has the Old Year gone!

Where has the Old Year gone?
     Gone the circle of the earth,
     Grief to some—to others mirth—
     Back to God who gave it birth;
There has the Old Year gone!

Where has the Old Year gone?
     Gone with promise false or true,
     Gone with loving friends we knew,
     Hid for ever from our view:
There has the Old Year gone!

Where has the Old Year gone?
     Gone with all its hopes and fears,
     Gone with all its joys and tears,
     Dead and buried with the years:
There has the Old Year gone!

Where has the Old Year gone?
     Gone till God recalls the past,
     Good or ill—the die is cast,
     Judged by it we are at last:
There has the Old Year gone!

Where have the Old Years gone?
     Gone! and left their scars for ever
On our hearts. Erase them?—Never!
     Till we cross Death’s chilly river:
Ah! there have the Old Years gone! [page 72] 


Oh! the fond links that bind us to this earth,
   Strong as bands of iron—yet fine as gold;
Partings and tears oft mingle with our mirth,—
   If loving much love never can grow cold!

Ah I were it not for partings now and then,
   Love of home and friends were never tested,—
Hardship and trial make the noblest men:
   Present pain is future joy invested!

The patriot’s wistful eyes are dimm’d with tears
  When parting for his much-lov’d native soil,
His heart doth throb with many doubts and fears,
   Yet hope points FORWARD though his soul recoil!

But when the weary years have come and gone,
   And o’er the sea he homeward ploughs his way,
He finds his former doubts and fears have flown—
   Midnight with him hath changed to dawn of day!

A mother parts with one—her only son,
   Each shews but half the anguish that they feel,—
The voyage finished, or the battle won,
   What depths of love the meeting doth reveal!

Methinks such joy is ours when God, at last,
   Shall find us gather’d ‘neath Heaven’s azure dome;
Our journeys, tears, and partings of the past
   Will be as naught if we but reach our home! [page 73]


Drifting down the river of life—
   Drifting, drifting, drifting;
A lonely bark—immortal soul,
Launch’d forth to seek life’s final goal,
O’er sunken rocks or hidden shoal,
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!

Drifting down the river of life—
   Drifting, drifting, drifting;
High, rocky, frowning banks o’erhead,
‘Neath tangled branches, ‘live and dead,
A tiny bark to ocean sped,
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!

Drifting down the river of life—
   Drifting, drifting, drifting;
Here, passing through some lovely scene,
Cool shade and sunshine intervene,
Now, o’er a cascade’s glist’ning sheen,
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!

Drifting down the river of life—
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!
Ever moving—resting never—
Speeds the bark adown life’s river,
Daring Death and danger ever,
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!

Drifting down the river of life—
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!
Hark! the roll of distant thunder,
Lightnings rend the rocks asunder,
Oh! the look of awe struck wonder,
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!

Drifting down the river of life—
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!
Cowering ‘neath the chilly blast,
Many a dreadful cavern past,
Out—out into the Light at last!
   Clouds and shadows lifting! [page 74] 

See! the Pilot looking for us—
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!
Raise the signal to Him—“Prayer!”
Trust His wisdom, skill, and care,
Gone the night of dark despair,
   No more danger drifting!

Oh! the wrecks that strew the shore—
   Drifting, drifting, drifting!
No Faith had they on sea or land,
While others knelt, they dar’d to stand,
And spurn’d the Pilot’s helping Hand—
   Wreck’d and lost while drifting!


Freedom is obedience to righteous law
   Framed for the guidance of a nation great;
Made to be kept—not broken by a flaw
   Known only to the rulers of the State!
Justice that treats the rich and poor alike,
   Defending each from favor or attack;
Slow to convict—yet ready aye to strike
   The fatal blow on all that honor lack!
A nation’s strength is measured by her laws;
   Her safety is the welfare of her sons;
Industry and loyalty the power that draws
   In peace her commerce, and in war her guns!
Freedom—our birthright, sell it not for gold,
Our father bought it with their blood of old! [page 75]


Who PLEADS his CASE ‘gainst wind and tide,
And swings HIS ROBE from side to side,
As proud as any new made bride?
     The consequential Lawyer!

Who loves his CLIENT and a BRIEF,
Yet who EXPOUNDS beyond belief,
Till all around gasp for relief?
     The bright, LONG WINDED lawyer!

Who gathers EVIDENCE with care,
And knows how best to “split a hair,”
That makes the honest Judge to stare?
     The cute and cunning Lawyer!

Who knows the MERITS of each case,
Defines the MOTIVE, TIME, and PLACE,
Cross-questions WITNESS face to face?
     The cool, clear-headed Lawyer!

Who looks just spoiling for a fight,
To right a wrong or wrong a right,
Because he is A LEGAL LIGHT?
     The enterprising Lawyer!

How glad and happy does he feel,
And make DEFENDANT squirm and squeal
     At COSTS from PLAINTIFF’S Lawyer!

To say that JUSTICE must be blind
Is but  LIBEL most unkind,—
She swings a sword in front, behind,
     To scare both JUDGE and LAWYER!

He helps us in our time of need
From cruel WRONG or faulty DEED—
Let’s not forget he has to feed—
     FEE well your faithful Lawyer! [page 76]


Ah! we never miss the sunshine
   Till the storm-clouds roll a pace,
And we value not the dear one
   Till we see the cold dead face;
Oh! our hearts are seldom melted
   Till the voice is hushed and still
Of the lov’d one we have walked with
   Up the path-way of life’s hill!

Let us linger in life’s sunshine
   Till the last glad ray departs
Let the twilight and the dawning
   Link the closer trusting hearts;
Then each morrow will be brighter
   For the sunshine that hath been,
And life’s burden be the lighter
For the sympathies between.

Oh! to speak some words of kindness
   In the ear of human woe,
Is like eyes to stony blindness
   Of the groping ones below;
Ah! the touch of tender fingers
   On our throbbing brows of pain,
Is the sweet of life that lingers,
   Ere we turn to earth again! [page 77] 


I know a winsome little pet
   With wealth of roseate blisses,
Who takes what favors she can get,
   And pays her debts with—kisses!

At night when I come home to tea
   She bribes me with her “kisses,”
Then plants herself upon my knee
   And tastes of all my dishes!

She comes off best in every “trade,”
   And seldom ever misses
To catch me in the trap she’s laid,
   Then “pays me off” with—kisses!

She says she wants a “dolly” nice,
   With long and golden tresses,
And if I ask her for the price,
   Gives kisses and caresses!

I dearly love this little maid,
   Above all other misses;
I’ll take back every word I’ve said
   And “trade” with her for—“TISSES!” [page 78]


I found a streak of silver fair
Among my locks of raven hair,
That made my eyes wide open stare,—
          My first grey hair!

Come thou as friend, or come as foe,
As sign of wisdom, or of woe?—
Which of these four I’d like to know,
          Thou lone grey hair!

“Grey hairs are hon’rable” ‘tis said,
But raven black becomes my head,
I’d rather far that thou wert red,
          My first grey hair!

I hope the years to come may see
A grandchild sitting on each knee,
Grey hairs will then becoming be,
          And dark ones rare!

I hope to live to see the day.
Though may it yet be far away,
When all my locks shall turn to grey,
          All silvery fair!

But not just yet,—no! not for gold
Would I permit thee to have hold
Upon my scalp—I’m not that old!
          Begone!—grey hair! [page 79] 


Earth is out in her new SPRING dress,
   A-wooing the hearts of men!
Ardent lovers their loves confess
   Over and over again!
         Birds are singing,
         Dewdrops clinging,
Flowers are laughing at May;
         Hope fills again
         The hearts of men,
As they plough the fields of to-day!

Earth is out in her SUMMER dress,
   With the rainbow tints anew,
The children’s hearts and lives to bless,
   And the skies are azure blue!
         A new love song
         The whole day long
Is sung by the milking maid,
         The lambs at play
Are wild to-day,
As they romp in the flowery glade!

Earth is out in her AUTUMN dress,
   The color of ruby wine,
Her heart is full of tenderness
   In response to heart of mine!
         She knows it well
         I need not tell
The vows of the Happy year;
         In wedded bliss
         No joys we miss
Though the Wintry blasts be near!

Earth is robed in her WINTER dress,
   All spotlessly white and pure;
No flowers hath she, no warm caress,
   Yet her heart is mine, I’m sure:
         Love’s heat or cold,
         Makes love more bold, [page 80]
And the bracing Winter’s blast—
         Tho’ seeming rude—
         Is fraught with good,
When the die of the year is cast!

Nature and I are the lovers dear,
   I love her in every mood;
A perfect love that knows not fear,
   A love that is pure and good!
         At last I’ll rest
         Upon her breast
Like a seed well sown away,
         Freed from earth’s pain
         To bloom again
In a land of endless day!


Quit nagging!—‘tis a mean contemptible sport,
Whose poison tipp’d arrows fly straight from Hell’s fort,
Ah! many true hearts are embittered for life,
By the thoughtless nag nagging of husband or wife!

Quit nagging!—‘tis just like the fool and his gun,—
“Didn’t know it was loaded!”—“fired only in fun!”
But the life of a friend may thus be cut short,—
Words may cut like a sword tho’ uttered in sport.

Quit nagging!—kind words are more easily said,—
Remembered long after the speaker is dead,—
The heart that loves most is soonest heart-broken,
And droops like a flower by hasty words spoken.

Quit nagging!—or Time may bring tears of regret,
For words said in temper you cannot forget;
True hearts may be cheered that by anguish are torn,
Through falsehood, neglect, cruel nagging, or scorn!

Quit nagging!—man’s lot is at best full of care,
Our duty to each is life’s burdens to share;—
Give flowers to the living and not to the dead,
Then God’s richest blessings shall fall on your head. [page 81] 


A man of patience, zeal, and skill,
Of judgment cool, and iron will,
An enemy to every ill,
   Is he—the family doctor.

He’s at our call by night or day,
And “ready for the road” alway,
A sudden summons he’ll obey,
The faithful family doctor.

When in the hall his hat is hung,
He feels the pulse, and scans the tongue,
Then quick prescribes for old or young,
   The skilful family doctor!

A queer black bag he brings so sly,
It fills with dread the children’s eye,
For once they heard a baby cry,
   Left by the family doctor!

One day he came with solemn tread,
And, speaking softly, shook his head;
“We’ve done our best—poor man—he’s dead,”
   The sympathising doctor!

He comes to cure our many ills,
With powders, plasters, drugs and pills;
Then by the post he sends his bills,—
   Who would not pay the doctor?

But money cannot always pay,
The good he goes from day to day;
Our grateful love he earns alway—
   God bless the family doctor! [page 82] 


When worry, and care, and toil are ours,
   And the day’s weary heights we climb,
Let’s think of the restful evening hours—
   We live but one day at a time!

So let us toil on for those we love,
   To fret and despair is a crime;
‘Twill lessen our load to look above;
   We live but one day at a time!

To labor and toil is man’s estate,
   The reward will come—dime by dime;
Be it ours to bravely work and wait—
   We live but one day at a time.

Then work with a will and sing this lay
   To the tune of the evening’s chime,—
“Let canker and care fly swift away!”
   We live but one day at a time!

And at last, when life’s grey shadows fall,
   Ere we pass to the realms sublime,
We shall hear the Master’s welcome call:
   “Thou hast lived well, one day at a time!” [page 83]


                    The baby is dead,
                       How still it sleeps;
                    Dear baby is dead,
                       Its mother weeps:
And the tear-drops fall on her thin white hands,
Like a summer shower on the thirsty sands;
The hope of a mother lies cold and still,
In that little white coffin near the sill!
                    And father stands by
                       With bowéd head—
                    No grief like a sigh:
                       Baby is dead.

                    A wee satin shroud,
                       Narrow its bed;
                    The clock ticks so loud,
                       Baby is dead.
So still the house—you can hear your heart-beat,
The wheels of the hearse sound harsh on the street;
The children tell Aunt, in a room near by:—
They—“Can’t make out why a baby should die!”
              “Little hands and feet,
                 “All pink and red,
              “Like a dolly meat,
                 “Is baby dead?”

                    A little green mound,
                       A tiny stone,
                    In churchyard ground,
                       Stands all alone!
But up in Heaven a new face is seen,
Where never a sigh nor a tear hath been;
And the angels sing to that baby fair,
Till its mother arrives to claim it there,
                    Sweetest songs of love:
                       No death—no sin,
                    In that Home above
                       Can enter in! [page 84]


Shall we know our friends in Heaven—
   Kindred souls while here below?
Will the pleasure there be given
   Recognizing those we know?
Yes! the Scriptures plainly telleth,
   We shall know as we are known,
Songs of gracious welcome swelleth,
   Sung by lov’d ones round the throne!

See yon happy mother finding,
   One by-one, her children dear;
Family ties for ever binding,
   None are missing—all are here!
Wife and husband fondly meeting,
   No more sorrow, death, or pain;
Brothers, sisters, gladly greeting,
   Never more to part again!

Sunder’d friends again united,
   Wrong and falsehood all forgiven;
The pure in heart hath God invited,
   He is Love, and Love is Heaven!
Walking humbly—sins confessing—
   “God and Heaven” our watchword be;
Praying for the Father’s blessing,
   Heaven shall open unto thee!

Ah! to miss that great re-union,
   Doom’d eternal death to die;
Never more to have communion,
   With our friends beyond the sky;
Worse than death to be rejected,
   Banish’d from that happy throng;
Never coming—yet expected,
   Shall WE miss that welcome song? [page 85] 


Two letters came by post one day,
   From foreign lands apart;
One—full of joy as children’s play—
   The other chill’d a heart;
First told of fortune, hope and love,
   In youth’s impassion’d breath;
The other, of a child belov’d,
   Now cold and still in death!

Two ships left port with fav’ring gale,
   Both homeward-bound were they,
Together side-by-side they sail,
   But drift apart each day:—
One with the trade-winds swiftly flew,
   And safely reach’d the shore;
The other’s fate none ever knew—
   ‘Twas never heard of more!

Two planks out on the ocean drear,
   A thousand leagues apart,
Drift aimlessly—now far, now near,—
   Like many a human heart
Out on life’s ever-changing tide,
   Where winds and waters roar;
One day they touch and, side-by-side,
   Link fortunes to the shore!

And such is life! no man can tell
   His fortune—good or ill;
God doeth all things wisely well
   His glory to fulfil;
Our ship is on life’s stormy sea
   Its mysteries to explore,—
Let God our chosen Captain be,
   He’ll steer us safe to shore! [page 85] 


When thy friend turns false and vain—
   Overcome evil with good,
Thou may’st win him back again—
   Overcome evil with good;
Coals of kindness on his head
For the Word of God hath said—
   Overcome evil with good!

When a brother treats thee ill—
   Overcome evil with good,
Let him have of wrath his fill—
   Overcome evil with good;
You may o’er him cast a spell—
An answer mild will rage dispel;
God is Judge—He doeth well—
   Overcome evil with good!

When ingratitude doth sting—
   Overcome evil with good,
God can balm from venom bring—
   Overcome evil with good;
He who marks the sparrow’s fall,
Listens to His children’s call,
Tell Him—though He knows it all—
   Overcome evil with good!

Some day trials will be o’er—
   Overcome evil with good,
Pride and falsehood be no more—
   Overcome evil with good;
In that home beyond the sky,
We shall there see eye-to-eye,
Never heave another sigh,


Oh, brother! why this grasping mood,
   When Want and Hunger cry aloud?
Then use your wealth in doing good.—
   There are no pockets in a shroud!

Oh, brother! why this haughty air,
   And over-bearing manner proud;
The poor are God’s peculiar care,—
   There are no pockets in a shroud!

Remember him of old, who gave
   His food to dogs, while Lazarus stood,
Beseeching help his life to save,
   While Dives—the glutton, wasted food!

His fate be thine! O, wealthy man!
   It thou neglect thy power for good;
God hath ordained it in His plan—
   There are no pockets in a shroud!

The wheel of Fortune quickly turns—
   Thy children yet may lack for food;
God pity him who mercy spurns
   And wraps his treasures in a shroud!

God bless the man whose heart can bleed
   With sympathy for sorrow’s crowd,
And helps the poor in time of need—
   There are no pockets in a shroud!

Do not the suffering ones forget,
   Thy praises they shall sing aloud;
Their tears of gratitude shall wet
   The grass that grows above thy shroud! [page 88] 



The sons of England are her boast,
   They love her as of yore,
Then pledge to her a loyal toast,
   As oft we’ve done before!

           CHORUS.—Her sons are free,
                                 By land or sea,
                   They know not craven fear!
                                 They dare to fight
                                 For God and right,
                        For home, and kindred dear!

Should foreign powers invade her strand
   And taunt her with their boasts,
Her free-born sons from many a land
Would rally round her coasts.—CHO.

America would send her share
   Across Atlantic’s wave,
In Freedom’s cause their swords declare,
Their mother-land to save.—CHO.

From Canada would gladly go,
Rose, Thistle, Shamrock green!
They’d help to fight a common foe
   And shield their royal Queen.—CHO.

From far across old Neptune’s line
   Behold!  a loyal band,
Australia—India—would combine
To lend a helping hand.—CHO.

From distant island of the sea
   Would rise a gallant host,
To prove that England shall be free,
And guarded well her coast.—CHO. [page 89]


An open foe we need not fear,
But watch his tactics far or near,
And make him pay for errors dear,
          As suit’s law’s reason;
But “nameless” writers oft get clear,
          Though full of treason!

His pen is dipp’d in venom’d gall,
His poison’d darts are sharp and small,
His heart—if one he has at all—
          Is Virtue’s slighter;
The meanest coward since the Fall,—
The “nameless” writer.

He may be fair before your face,
And seem possess’d of every grace,
Till confidence in him you place,
          This hidden smiter;
Infinite wisdom scarce could trace
The “nameless” writer.

He whispers oft where zephyrs blow
An innuendo soft and low,
Some reputation to o’erthrow,
          This base backbiter;
With eloquence his phrases flow,
          The “nameless” writer!

We surely cannot be to blame,
When such address us without name,
To set their “scribblings” in a flame,
          These cowardly fighters!
They play a base, unequal game,
          The “nameless” writers! [page 90]


Look for the first faint streaks of morn
That gild the eastern sky,
Another day in beauty born,
   As mounts the sun on high;
Tinting the tops of highest towers
   With crimson and with gold,
Melting the dew-drops from the flowers
That peepingly unfold:
There doth “the beautiful” abide
   In calm security;
The rosy morn—deck’d like a bride—
   Of virgin purity!

Look for the eyes that beam with love,
   And sparkle with delight,
To meet thy gaze—like stars above—
   Brightest in thy dark night;
Dispelling every thought of sin
   From out thy heart’s great deep,
Chasing the darkness from within,
   Or soothe thy fears to sleep:
There doth “the beautiful” abide
   In full maturity;
And there may thy fond heart reside
   Through all futurity! [page 91]



Oh! that I had the artist’s power to touch
   The speaking canvas with a master-hand,
I’d paint a scene I truly love as much
   As any landscape in this fair new land!

That picture would be Queenston’s lovely height,
   ‘Neath which Niagara’s rushing waters gleam,
Like molten glory in the sunset bright,
   Or fancy’s vision in a pleasant dream!

Here two great nations meet as if to kiss,
   Divided only by a silver line;
Peace, welfare, harmony, and mutual bliss
   Link fruitful branches of parent vine!

The setting sun would tint Niagara Town
   With gilded glory as he sinks to rest;
A noble steamer bearing swiftly down
   Toward Ontario’s heaving, billowy breast!

The stately monument of Brock would stand
   In bold relief against the azure sky,—
The valiant leader of a noble band
   Who for their country’s honour dar’d to die!

A picture thus I’d paint in Nature’s praise,
   And worship at the threshold of her door;
Before the scene I stand in rapt amaze—
   In silence dumb—yet love it all the more! [page 92]


   In the pathway of life,
   ‘Mid its trials and strife,
There’s a motto to you I commend:
   In life’s ups and its downs,
   In its crosses or crowns,
You must never go back on a friend!

   Thou your friends may be few,
   Let them feel that in you
And your word they can ever depend;
   To preserve your good name
   From contumely and shame
You must scorn to go back on a friend!

   There are times when you can’t
   Keep engagements you want;
Don’t neglect explanations to send;
   Just as true as you live,
   They will freely forgive—
And not say you went back on a friend!

   Should a friend be in need
   Of advice or kind deed,
Don’t begrudge him your comfort to lend;
   He will bless you at last,
   When his troubles are past—
In adversity stand by your friend!

   Thou the seas ebb and flow,
   Let your friends ever know,
You are faithful and true to the end;
   Should misfortune betide,
   They will stand by your side,
For YOU never went back on a friend!

   There is one Friend above,
   Whom we all ought to love,
Who is strong as a Tower to defend;
   Let His Word be your guide,
   And keep close by His side—
Don’t go back upon God as your Friend. [page 93] 


The friendship of the good and true
     Is more to me than gold,
And while I welcome one that’s new
     I’ll treasure well the old;
Old friends are like this goodly tree
     Whose leafy branches throw
A grateful shelter over me
     When adverse winds may blow!

Friends dead and gone, friends far and near,
Friends tired and true, friends ever dear,
Though sundered far, yet all are here—
          Close to my heart;
And all along life’s rugged way,
The smile of Friendship crowns the day,
And hearts are young, tho’ heads be grey,—
          Friends never part.

                    Yours very kindly,
                                   John Imrie,
                                             Toronto, Canada. [unnumbered page]



is a fair sample of his work. Perhaps, however, you would wish to have a nicely bound copy of his Poems. It comprises 350 pages, is printed on good heavy boned paper, beautifully bound in cloth and gold, and will be sent to any address, post free, on receipt of One Dollar. The book will make an acceptable Holiday or Birthday present. Address—IMRIE, GRAHA, & CP., 31 Church St., Toronto, Canada. [unnumbered page]


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