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Translation
Index

Elegy On The Late Miss Burnet Of Monboddo

 

Burns Original

Standard English Translation

1.
Life ne'er exulted in so rich a prize
As Burnet, lovely from her native skies;
Nor envious Death so triumph'd in a blow
As that which laid th' accomplish'd Burnet low.
2.
Thy form and mind, sweet maid, can I forget?
In richest ore the brightest jewel set!
In thee high Heaven above was truest shown,
For by His noblest work the Godhead best is known.
3.
In vain ye flaunt in summer's pride, ye groves!
Thou crystal streamlet with thy flowery shore,
Ye woodland choir that chaunt your idle loves,
Ye cease to charm: Eliza is no more.
4.
Ye heathy wastes immix'd with reedy fens,
Ye mossy streams with sedge and rushes stor'd,
Ye rugged cliffs o'erhanging dreary glens,
To you I fly: ye with my soul accord.
5.
Princes whose cumb'rous pride was all their worth,
Shall venal lays their pompous exit hail,
And thou, sweet Excellence! forsake our earth,
And not a Muse with honest grief bewail?
6.
We saw thee shine in youth and beauty's pride
And Virtue's light, that beams beyond the spheres;
But, like the sun eclips'd at morning tide,
Thou left us darkling in a world of tears.
7.
The parent's heart that nestled fond in thee,
That heart how sunk, a prey to grief and care!
So deck the woodbine sweet yon aged tree,
So, rudely ravish'd, left it bleak and bare.


Life ne'er exulted in so rich a prize
As Burnet, lovely from her native skies;
Nor envious Death so triumphed in a blow
As that which laid the accomplished Burnet low.

Your form and mind, sweet maid, can I forget?
In richest ore the brightest jewel set!
In you high Heaven above was truest shown,
For by His noblest work the Godhead best is known.

In vain you flaunt in summer's pride, you groves!
You crystal streamlet with your flowery shore,
You woodland choir that chant your idle loves,
You cease to charm: Eliza is no more.

You heath wastes intermixed with reedy fens,
You mossy streams with sedge and rushes stored,
You rugged cliffs overhanging dreary glens,
To you I fly: you with my soul accord.

Princes whose cumbrous pride was all their worth,
Shall venal lays their pompous exit hail,
And you, sweet Excellence! forsake our earth,
And not a Muse with honest grief bewail?

We saw you shine in youth and beauty's pride
And Virtue's light, that beams beyond the spheres;
But, like the sun eclipsed at morning tide,
You left us darkling in a world of tears.

The parent's heart that nestled fond in you,
That heart how sunk, a prey to grief and care!
So deck the woodbine sweet yonder aged tree,
So, rudely ravished, left it bleak and bare.

 

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