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Poem by Robert Burns


To A Louse


 On seeing one on a ladys bonnet at church.

HA! whare ye gaun, ye crowlin ferlie!
Your impudence protects you sairly:
I canna say but ye strunt rarely,
    Owre gauze and lace;
Tho faith! I fear ye dine but sparely
    On sic a place.

Ye ugly, creepin, blastit wonner,
Detested, shunnd by saunt an sinner!
How dare ye set your fit upon her,
    Sae fine a lady?
Gae somewhere else, and seek your dinner
    On some poor body.

Swith, in some beggars haffet squattle;
There ye may creep, and sprawl, and sprattle
Wi ither kindred jumping cattle,
    In shoals and nations;
Where horn nor bane neer dare unsettle
    Your thick plantations.

Now haud ye there, yere out o sight,
Below the fattrels, snug an tight;
Na, faith ye yet! yell no be right
    Till yeve got on it,
The very tapmost towring height
    O Misss bonnet.

My sooth! right bauld ye set your nose out,
As plump and gray as onie grozet;
O for some rank mercurial rozet,
    Or fell red smeddum!
Id gie you sic a hearty doze ot,
    Wad dress your droddum!

I wad na been surprisd to spy
You on an auld wifes flannen toy;
Or aiblins some bit duddie boy,
    Ons wyliecoat;
But Misss fine Lunardi! fie,
    How daur ye dot?

O Jenny, dinna toss your head,
An set your beauties a abread!
Ye little ken what cursed speed
    The blasties makin!
Thae winks and finger-ends, I dread,
    Are notice takin!

O wad some Powr the giftie gie us
To see oursels as others see us!
It wad frae mony a blunder free us,
    And foolish notion:
What airs in dress an gait wad leae us,
    And evn devotion!



                      Robert Burns


Robert Burns's other poems:
  1. Scroggam
  2. Lines Written on a Bank-note
  3. Lines Written at Loudon Manse
  4. To Alex Cunningham, Writer
  5. How Lang And Dreary


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