Friday, January 25, 2013

O Wad Some Power the Giftie Gie Us...

Today is Robbie Burns Day, the celebration of the birth of Scotland's beloved poet.  When I was a child we always celebrated Robbie Burns Day.  My mother would cook haggis, but I never acquired a taste for it.  However, having a Scottish heritage, I enjoyed the tradition.  In Scotland Robbie Burns Day is almost a national holiday.  In fact, it is a national holiday.  His poetry was always earthy, direct and sincere.  He was also known for his humour, and two of his most famous poems are "Ode to a Louse", and "Ode to a Mouse"  He was said to have had a great influence on Wordsworth, Coleridge and Shelley.  He was a simple farmer, and he died at the age of 37, after living a difficult life that left him with a permanent curvature of the spine.  One of my favourite quotations is from his poem "Ode to a Louse":

O wad some Pow'r the giftie gie us
To see oursels as ithers see us!

Happy Robbie Burns day, everyone.  Here is a Scottish blessing for you, and just in case you are in need of some bagpipes today, here is British Columbia's Simon Fraser University Pipe Band, which consistently places in first place in the competitions in Glasgow, Scotland.

May the best you've ever seen
Be the worst you'll ever see.
May the mouse never leave your pantry
With a tear-drop in his eye.
May you always keep healthy and hearty
Until you're old enough to die.
May you always be just as happy
As we wish you now to be.


Leslie: said...

That was AWESOME, Josie! Not one false note - that's the way the pipes should be played and we Canadians, whether Scottish or not, should be mighty proud of our Simon Fraser Band! This got me tappin' me foot and almost got me up doing a bit o' a fling! :D

VioletSky said...

however, my mother never subjected us to haggis.
I have had it and found it an acquired taste but palatable in very small portions :)
I never acquired a taste for Burns poetry, however. I often think I'd like to take a course that might help with understanding what the heck he was going on about and maybe then I might appreciate it more.

the walking man said...

Once one learns to just read Burns it is understandable why the Scots (my grandfather was a Stewart)love his work. They all led a hard life then and he gave them humor.