Thursday, 3 November 2011

Rain and Rabbie

You'd be quite correct in wondering what the association is between rain and Rabbie Burns. Looking at the dreich day outside, rain slashing the windows, made me want to share a wee poem about rain with you. It's far too easy to get sidetracked though, for instead of a wee rainy poem I'm sharing one of the The Bard's well known love poems.
Robert (Rabbie) Burns (25 Jan 1759- 21 July 1796) is widely regarded as the National Poet of Scotland. The Bard, celebrated worldwide mainly for 'Auld Lang Syne', wrote in Scottish dialect and in standard English. Many of his poems were not originals as he was wont to adapt folk songs he collected along the way, but his adaptations are weel kent.
He was also known for his many love affairs. Mrs. Agnes M'Lehose (Clarinda) was his lover before he settled down and married Jean Armour, though he retained a strong affection for 'Clarinda' for many years. He wrote a number of poems attributed to Clarinda, and this one I share today was given to her in Edinburgh in 1791 just before she set sail to Jamaica. Sir Walter Scott was said to think 'Ae Fond Kiss' contained 'the essence of a thousand love tales'.
If you've ever heard 'Ae Fond Kiss' sung you'll know just how romantic, and heartrending, it can be. My father had a fine tenor voice that was perfect for this, and it was one of his favourite Burn's songs.

Ae fond Kiss

Ae fond kiss, and then we sever!
Ae farewell, and then forever!
Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee.
Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee.

Who shall say that Fortune grieves him,
While the star of hope she leaves him?
Me, nae cheerfu' twinkle lights me,
Dark despair around benights me.

I'll ne'er blame my partial fancy:
Naething could resist my Nancy!
But to see her was to love her,
Love but her, and love forever.

Had we never lov'd sae kindly,
Had we never lov'd sae blindly,
Never met-or never parted-
We had ne'er been broken-hearted.

Fare-thee-weel, thou first and fairest!
Fare-thee-weel, thou best and dearest!
Thine be ilka joy and treasure,
Peace, Enjoyment, Love and Pleasure!

Ae fond kiss, and then we sever!
Ae farewell, alas, for ever!
Deep in heart-wrung tears I'll pledge thee,
Warring sighs and groans I'll wage thee.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for reading my blog. Please pop your thoughts about this post in the comment box. :-)