a Symposium of Scottish Songs.
THERE was ance held a gran' meetin' o' Scottish
sangs. The date thereof was some time
afore or after the year " Auchty-nine ;" the
place canna be fixed wi' the same exactness,
but it was probably near " The Banks an' Braes o'
Bonnie Doon," in honour o' the " Lad that was born
in Kyle." " Macgregor's Gathering" was naething tae
this. Sangs cam poorin' in frae every quarter. Here
cam " Jolly shepherds that whistle through the glen,"
an' " Braw, braw lads frae Gala Water ;" an' there
was abundance o' national music in the shape o' " A
Hundred Pipers, an' a', an' a'," accompanied by " The
Pibroch o' Donal' Dhu;" while yonder, in gallant
array, "The Campbells are comin'," "The Bonnets o'
Bonnie Dundee," an' a numerous company o' others.
It was moved by " Auld Robin Gray," an' seconded
by " The Laird o' Cockpen," that " Logie o' Buchan "
tak the honoured place in "The Old Arm Chair." The
repast that followed wasna what mortals would be apt
to think the choicest, the delicacies bein' sic as " The
Haggis o' Dunbar,""Bannocks o' Barley Meal,""Caller
Herrin'," an' "Cauld Kail in Aberdeen." For this
meetin', hooever, "Willie brewed a peck o' maut," an'
Neil Gow had no' yet bade " Fareweel tae Whisky,"
so that, after a', they micht hae sung something else
on the occasion than " Contented wi' little, an' cantie
wi' mair." Amang the ladies o' high rank present were
" Annie Laurie," " Mary Morrison," " Bonnie Bessie
Lee," " Roy's Wife o' Aldivalloch," " Highland Mary,"
"Bonnie Jean," "The Lassie wi' the lint white locks,"
" Maggie Lauder," an' " Auld Joe Nicholson's Bonnie
Nannie ;" while prominent amang the other sex were
"John Anderson, my jo, John," "Duncan Gray," "Tarn
Glen," "John Grumlie," " Wanderin' Willie," "Jock
o' Hazeldean," "The Rantin', Roarin' Hielanman,"
"Johnnie Cope," "Alister M'Alister," an' "The Sodger
Laddie." The Chairman gave an account o' his wan-
derings, which had extended frae " Maidenkirk tae
John o' Groats." He had seen "The Bonnie Woods
o' Craigie Lea," had wandered by the banks o' " Afton
Water," amang the "The Braes o' Ballochmyle" and
" The Birks o' Aberfeldy." Mony hours had he spent
amang " The bloom o' my ain native heather;" he had
plucked mony " A Rosebud by his Early Walk," an'
kent by name a' " The Flowers o' the Forest." But
where'er he strayed he had never forgotten that he was
" Woo'd an' Married an' a'," an' that, " For the Sake o'
Somebody," he lo'ed best " My Ain Fireside." At
every point o' the compass he had consoled himsel'
wi' " I'll awa' tae Nannie, O;" an' indeed, he hoped
they would a' be able to say at the close o' life, " Happy
we've been a' thegither." " Duncan Gray " havin' just
been rejected by Maggie," was in a very morose mood
?wished he was " Where Helen lies," said " She was
fair an' fause that caused his smart," an', to cheer himsel'
up, sang "Oh, are ye sleepin', Maggie ?" at the end o'
which "Maggie Lauder" requested him tae "Behave
himsel' afore folk." "John Grumlie swore by the
licht o' the moon" that "Ance he wished he'd ne'er
been married," an' for this purpose he had gane "O'er
the water tae Charlie," but that noo he had learned
that his wife was " A Winsome Wee Thing," an' that
as she " Lo'ed him best ava'," he should henceforth
go " Marching Along," with the motto, " Hame, Sweet
Hame." At this stage entered " Dainty Davie," accom-
panied by " Jessie, the Flower o' Dunblane," an'
"When she cam' ben, she bobbit, she bobbit." Envious
a little o' her sister, " Annie Laurie" whispered, "Gang
doun the burn, Davie," an' then " Whistle and I'll
come tae ye, my lad." Davie took her at her word,
an' in goin' hummed " Dinna think, bonnie lassie, I'm
gaun tae leave ye." The " Laird o' Cockpen " thocht
there was " Nae luck aboot the hoose," where sic
sentimental sangs were sung ; he didna care for "A kiss
ahint the door," "Come under my plaidie," "Dinna ask
me gin I lo'e thee," " My Nannie, O," " O could I
wi' Fancy stray," an' sic like. He preferred some-
thing he could clutch; for instance, " Gie me a lass
wi' a lump o' land," " Hey for a lass wi' a tocher," an'
" Jenny's Bawbee." " The Rantin', Roarin' Hielan-
man " suggested that for the remainder of the evenin'
the laird should be tied up in " Rab Rorrison's
Bonnet," but Rab interposed, sayin', " It canna,
mauna, wunna be." After this there was a dance.
" John Anderson " began tae play " Within a mile o'
Edinbro' Toun," when he was interrupted by " Jock o'
Hazeldean," wha wished him tae play first " God save
the King." "Never mind the king," cried "Bonnie
Prince Charlie," wha was immediately knocked doon
wi' a brainch o' " The Auld Oak Tree " by " Johnnie
Cope." As he recovered he grumbled oot that he
didna like "A' that an,' a that," when he was politely
requested to " Whistle ower the lave o't." So the
evenin' passed away, till the chairman intimated that,
as he " Saw the mune, an' kent her horn," an' as some
o' them had evidently rather mair than " A wee
drappie in their e'e," it was time to break up, because
it wasna becomin' for sic celebrities as them tae sing
" We'll not go home till morning." They took the hint,
but before leavin' had a final chorus to " Meet again
some other nicht" for "The Days o' Auld Lang
Syne." W. S.
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Probable period of publication:
1880-1900 shelfmark: RB.m.143(021)
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