Beginners
Experts
Burns Supper
Top Features
Discussion Forum
Newsletter
Poems & Songs
The Letters
Federation
E- Membership
Schools
Contributions
Links
Search the Site
Scottish History
The Burns Shop

Translation
Index


O, Can Ye Labour Lea
TUNE: (As Title)

 

Burns Original

Standard English Translation

O, Can Ye Labour Lea

Chorus
O, can ye labour lea, young man,
O, can ye labour lea?
Gae back the gate ye came again -
Ye's never scorn me!
1.
I fee'd a man at Martinmas
Wi' airle-pennies three;
But a' the faut I had to him
He couldna labour lea.
(Note:- Martinmas is the mass or feast of St Martin
. Hansel-(pennies), hansel also handsel is a gift at
New Year or an inaugural gift, or earnest money, in
this case it was a down payment for wages to come,
obviously she was not satisfied.)
2.
O, clappin's guid in Febarwar,
An' kissin's sweet in May;
But what signifies a young man's love,
An't dinna last for ay?
3.
O, kissin is the key o' love
An' clappin is the lock;
An' makin of's the best thing
That e'er a young thing got!

 

O, Can You Labour Land

Chorus
O, can you labour land, young man,
O, can you labour land?
Go back the way you came again -
You shall never scorn me!

I hired a man at Martinmas
With hansel- pennies three;
But all the fault I had to (with) him
He could not labour land.






O, stroking is good in February,
And kissing is sweet in May;
But what signifies a young man's love,
If it does not last for always?

O, kissing is the key of love
And stroking is the lock;
And making of it is the best thing
That ever a young thing got!

 

2004 WBC. Under no circumstances can any  of the contents of this site be copied, reproduced,  or represented without prior written consent.