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Oh! Tam, Oh! Tam


The Tale of Tam O Shanter is a glorious, exciting and masterful piece of work.
It is a long tale, but nevertheless, to fully understand and enjoy the story, it must be read in it's entirety.
And while I highly recommend this for you reading pleasure, I will tease you here with my condensed version, that you may want more, and thus read the tale.

Oh! Tam, Oh! Tam

When thirsty neebors meet to hae a wee bit nappie,
Forget aboot the time, get fou, and unco happy,
On a blistery nicht, there-still at hame
Brows gathered, wrathful, sits sullen, sulky dame.

On that wretched night, cauld, wet, wi; fadin' licht
Tam wandered hame o'er Kirk-Alloway that vera nicht,
Whare Ghaists, Houlets, and Witches dance alike
Spurned oan by Auld Nick, a black and towzie tyke.

As Auld Nick (in shape o' beast) gied them music frae his pipes,
The Witches and warlocks roun' the cauldron did dance.
The music aroused oor Tam when eer he saw ane near stark,
Then roared oot. Loud for a' tae hear "Weel done Cutty Sark".

Catch the thief resounds throughout the Kirkyard
When Meg the mare rallied, an' bolted real hard
Under the Brig o' the River Doon with witches followin'
Rode oor Tam on Meg, wi a' a hollerin'.

When Nannie the witch snatched oot at the mare
An' grasped oot her haun at Meg's grey hair
In a maddening frenzie wi' a lurch at the rump,
She left poor Maggie with naught but a stump.

This tale o' truth wha a' should read
Curtail your drink -the lesson heed,
You too could find your rump a' bare
Remember Tam O Shanter's mare !.

Frank Campbell.