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Scots Language Centre Centre for the Scots Leid

Willie Tawse

29th September 2012

Fin e’re the hoolet cried “hoot-toot”
Willie Tawse stravaiged aboot
Like a futterat he wid prance
At a rave, he’d heid the dance
He’d shakk, he’d lowp, like fire in’t smiddy
Like ony wino on reid-biddy
He widna wirk, tho far frae glekit
Langsyne his schulin he’d forsakit
Bit mair an mair, nocturnal grew
(Apairt frae signin on the Broo)

Aa day, some like a crooshied cloot
Ower sofa, he’d be streekit oot
Ye’d takk him fur a Wally dug
Or flattened Oriental rug
He widna meeve ... jist snored, an fleched
An moched an raxxed an dwaumed an peched
Till, on the T.V. horror picturs
O timmer-sarked,wirm-etten craiturs
Gart littlins shakk. Oot on the loose
Willie wid steer, an leave the hoose
Wi ither flee-bi-nichts hobnobbin
Will-o-the-wisps at discos bobbin

Bit wheesht ... I hardly daur tae tell
Aboot the cheenge come ower himsel
For Willie’s snoot grew sherp an pynted
Like sleekit tod, wi nicht anointed
His lug turned saucer-shaped’s a bat
His ee luiked nerra as a cat
Like strippit brock, his guff wis rank
Nee langer roon the quines he’d swank
For frae his sheen, new-riven teirs
Showed orra cleuks, a ratten, weirs.
This mixter-maxter breet-cum-human
Turned blaik’s a cauldron o bitumen

A rareity, puir Willie Tawse
Fa’d brukken aa o natur’s laws
Bedd hame affrontit. Stoor crept ower
His taes, his kyte, his verra glower
As deid’s a curtain’s velvet tossle
Willie Tawse, becam a fossil
    O raves an discos, bairns, be feard
    Mind ye on Willie Tawse’s weird