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Translation
Index


On Holy Willie

 

Burns Original

Standard English Translation

 

1.
Here Holy Willie's sair worn clay
Taks up its last abode;
His saul has taen some other way --
I fear, the left-hand road.
2.
Stop! There he is as sure's a gun!
Poor, silly body, see him!
Nae wonder he's as black's the grun --
Observe wha's standing wi' him!
3.
Your burnstane Devilship, I see,
Has got him there before ye!
But haud your nine-tail-cat a wee,
Till ance you've heard my story.
4.
Your pity I will not implore,
For pity ye have nane.
Justice, alas! has gi'en him o'er,
And mercy's day is gane.
5.
But hear me, Sir, Deil as ye are,
Look something to your credit:
A cuif like him wad stain your name,
If it were kent ye did it!

 


Here Holy Willie's sore worn clay
Takes up its last abode;
His soul has taken some other way -
I fear, the left-hand road.

Stop! There he is as sure as a gun!
Poor, silly body, see him!
No wonder he is as black as the ground -
Observe who is standing with him!

Your brimstone Devilship, I see,
Has got him there before you!
But withhold your cat-of-nine-tails (lash) for a little,
Till once you have heard my story.

Your pity I will not implore,
For pity you have none.
Justice, alas! has given him over,
And mercy's day is gone.

But hear me, Sir, Devil as you are,
Look something to your credit:
A dastard like him would stain your name,
If it were known you did it!

 

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