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Poem by Robert Burns


On Scaring Some Water Fowl In Loch-Turit, a Wild Scene Among the Hills of Ochtertyre


WHY, ye tenants of the laks,
For me your watry haunt forsake?
Tell me, fellow-creatures, why
At my presence thus you fly?
Why disturb your social joys,
Parent, filial, kindred ties?-
Common friend to you and me,
Natures gifts to all are free:
Peaceful keep your dimpling wave,
Busy feed, or wanton lave;
Or, beneath the sheltering rock,
Bide the surging billows shock.
  Conscious, blushing for our race,
Soon, too soon, your fears I trace.
Man, your proud, usurping foe,
Would be lord of all below;
Plumes himself in Freedoms pride,
Tyrant stern to all beside.
  The eagle, from the cliffy brow,
Marking you his prey below,
In his breast no pity dwells,
Strong Necessity compels.
But Man, to whom alone is givn
A ray direct from pitying Heavn,
Glories in his heart humane-
And creatures for his pleasure slain.
  In these savage, liquid plains,
Only known to wandring swains,
Where the moasy rivlet strays,
Far from human haunts and ways;
All on Nature you depend,
And lifes poor season peaceful spend.
  Or, if mans superior might
Dare invade your native right,
On the lofty ether borne,
Man with all his powrs you scorn;
Swiftly seek, on clanging wings,
Other lakes and other springs;
And the foe you cannot brave,
Scorn at least to be his slave.



                      Robert Burns


Robert Burns's other poems:
  1. Mark Yonder Pomp
  2. Theres News, Lasses
  3. Scroggam
  4. To a Young Lady, Miss Jessy Lewars, Dumfries, with Books which the Bard Presented her
  5. The Toast


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