Monday, January 25, 2016

Robbie Burns Day - January 25/16

Robert Burns (1759 -1796)
Scotland's Favourite Son
Robert Burns was born at Alloway, near Ayr, on January 25, 1759. His father William was a gardener to the Provost of Ayr. Robert was educated briefly at John Murdoch's school in Alloway and later in Ayr. 
Family financial worries forced Burns to work as a farm labourer, and it was while thus occupied that he met his first love, Nelly Kirkpatrick. She inspired him to try his hand at poetry, a song entitled "O, once I lov'd a bonnie lass", set to the tune of a traditional reel. 
If you research Rabbie's poetry there are no fewer than 579 poems online attributed to the Ploughman Poet, Robden of Solway Firth, the Bard of Ayrshire or simply the Bard.
He had an eye for the ladies apparently having fathered 8 children with 5 different lasses, he did marry one in 1788 and Jean Armour became Mrs. Burns.
I tried to read many of his poems, but sadly the ones I found written in 1700 Scots dialect were just too much for me to understand. However, it is impossible to not see the quality that has endeared him these many years.
Among his many works there is one little poem you don't have to be Scots to be familiar with, you may have heard of "Auld Lang Syne"? If the spelling has you wondering, I'll give you a hint; it is very popular on New Year's Eve.


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