Tuesday, December 2, 2008
There was a wee yowe,
Hippin frae knowe to knowe;
It lookit up to the mune,
And saw mae ferlies na fyfteen:
It took a fit in ilka hand,
And hippit awa to Airland;
Frae Airland to Aberdeen:
And whan the yowe cam hame again,
The guidman was outby herdin' the kye;
The swine were in the spence, makin' the whey;
The guidwife was but an' ben, tinklin' the keys,
And lookin' owre lasses makin' at the cheese;
The cat in the ass-hole, makin' at the brose--
Down fell a cinder and burnt the cat's nose,
And it cried: "Yeowe, yeowe, yeowe," &c.
There was a wee bird,
It took a fit in every han',
And whuppit awa to Ayr's lan',
Frae Ayr's lan' to Aberdeen,
And saw ferlies fifteen.
It saw an auld man in the byre bin'en the kye, and an
auld wife in the close chackin' the mice to the hens
throwing banes in her face.
The auld mare makin' the porridge, and the wee foal
lickin' the stick.
There's an auld cat makin' cheese, and a wee kitten
The dog in the ash-hole makin' brose, Doon comes a
cinder and burns his nose.
The cock in the chimney-top kaimin' down his yellow
Come down, sir, What are ye doin' up there?
I took ma fit in ma han',
An' I happit ower to Irelan'.
Fat saw ye there?
I saw the girss grouin',
An' the sea flouin',
An' the bonnie boaties rouin'.
(1) Chambers PRS (1847), 183 "from recitation in
Ayrshire" [whence NAE (1932), 27]; (1870), 27, with
changes in the verb hip to the synonymous hap (lines
2,6). Montgomerie SC (1948), 53 (no.54). With the last
lines cf. "Poussie at the Fireside".
(2) "A Thrawn Sang", a fragment from Crawfordjohn (1820-
30), in Rymour Club Misc. II (1912-19), 100.
(3) SNQ VI.2 (July 1892), 25, from Kenmore; SC (1948),
162 (no. 300).
What seems a fragmentary version in MacLennan SNR
(1909), 13: "The bairn in the cradle, playin' wi' the keys,/
Tammy i' the kailpot up tae the knees,/ Pussy at the
fireside, sappin' a' the brose,/ Doon fell a cinder an' burnt
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