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Scots Language Centre Centre for the Scots Leid

Let the Records Show

29th July 2011

Born fin they'd selt the pram
Intae a clan comprisin o ae dug
A father, mither, granny, an a brither
Fad hae raither hid a metronome insteid
“I wish they'd pit her back again,” he said.

At five I failed the IQ test fur High
Wis sweir tae tell the wifie, the pig bedd in the sty
An wadna coont ma nummers up tae ten
Convinced she maun be glekit nae tae ken.

“How many legs has horsie?” she speired neist
I steekt ma mou, rebellion in ma breist
“No academic bent” wis her summation
Sae Mile-End Schule gied me an education
I liked it yonder, fin it poored wi rain
The lavvies floodit an the class wun hame.

On Sabbath days we traivelled tae a fairm
Wir kinfolk ained. I powkit in the barn
Flegged kittlins, howkit hoosies in the strae
Dinged doon the stooks, caad clockers aff the lay
An ilkie holiday, wir hale jing bang set furth
Fur Byron kintra, an a Heilan hearth.

Reared a Scot,
I learned a leid an wyes the lave forgot.
A halflin, aged eleeven, gey bumshayvelt
Tae yon first fantoosh place o lear I traivelled
Fur five lang years o weary, dreichsome trauchle
Its genteel teachers tuik me fur a bauchle!

Lowsed at saxteen, tae Art schule, rank an roch
I skippit aff, tae be the neist Van Gogh
Failed ilkie dam't exam, an wi a grue
Tuik T.C. trainin syne, tae jink the Broo

Ochone … yon darg wis waur nur Passchendaele
I'd raither stap ma heid aneth a flail
Tae thole, day in, day oot, young limmers' jaw
S'like haein aa yer hams, sliced wi a saw

An sae I merriet. Reared a faimily
Thinkin twid be the verra dab fur me
We'll let yon flee stick, wummlin tae the waa
There's faats aa roon at ony biggin's faa
I wield ma pen. It's sootherin, yon's a fack
A verse or story niver answers back.