Today is the birthday of Robert Burns (1759-1796), national poet of Scotland, who wrote over 900 poems and songs and collected and made available hundreds of traditional Scottish songs as well. This is all the more astounding when you consider his impoverished background, spotty education, delayed launch into literary life, and, sadly, his premature death at age 37. All over the English-speaking world today, Burns’ birthday is celebrated with recitation of his poetry; the festive presentation, and even the consumption, of haggis; toasts, speeches and songs; and a concluding round of Auld Lang Syne.
Although Burns is probably best known for his beautiful and poignant love poems, generally written in honor of one of the numerous ladies Burns admired, my offering today is a seasonal verse appropriate for a Monday morning in January.
Move your buttocks, you lazy fool. It’s breakfast-time!
Stop talking nonsense, you unmannerly blockhead.