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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A Farewell to Politics....

for the time being! Oh, sure, I'll be back on it sooner or later; probably with some commentary on Britain's general election next May, and the unfolding of the constitutional reform movement. And when our American elections roll around, you'll hear from me as well (especially since I'll be voting for the first time!). I'll also continue to make known my opinions about some controversies in the news.

    But still...over the course of this referendum battle, I came to realize that I really am not cut out for political commentary as a calling. I'm not the type who enjoys competing and quarreling as a hobby; that's why I don't care for athletic sports or debating clubs. At heart, God made an artist, with a verve for creating and reflecting on beauty, and bringing people together through it. So that's what I intend to spend more of my time doing now, and writing about those things instead. So up with literature, cinema, drama, art, travel, cooking, philosophy, theology, history, and cultural traditions the world over!

    As an appropriate closing post in the epic saga of The Scottish Independence Referendum 2014, I'm going to post two poems from Robert Burns, that go a long way in summing up the Scottish and British identities. Long may they both endure. Together.


Scots wha ha'e wi' Wallace bled
Scots wham Bruce has often led
Welcome to your gory bed
Or to victory

Now's the day and now's the hour
See the front o' battle lour
See approach proud Edward's pow'r
Chains and slavery

Wha will be a traitor knave?
Wha can fill a coward's grave?
Wha sae base as be a slave?
Let him turn and flee!

Wha, for Scotland's king and law,
Freedom's sword will strongly draw,
Freeman stand or Freeman fa',
Let them follow me!

By oppression's woes and pains,
By your sons in servile chains,
We will drain our dearest veins,
But they shall be free.

Lay the proud usurpers low!
Tyrants fall in ev'ry foe!
Liberty's in ev'ry blow!
Let us do or die!


Does haughty Gaul invasion threat?
Then let the louns beware, Sir;
There's wooden walls upon our seas,
And volunteers on shore, Sir:
The Nith shall run to Corsincon,
And Criffel sink in Solway,
Ere we permit a Foreign Foe
On British ground to rally!

O let us not, like snarling curs,
In wrangling be divided,
Till, slap! come in an unco loun,
And wi' a rung decide it!
Be Britain still to Britain true,
Amang ourselves united;
For never but by British hands
Maun British wrangs be righted!

The Kettle o' the Kirk and State,
Perhaps a clout may fail in't;
But deil a foreign tinkler loun
Shall ever ca'a nail in't.
Our father's blude the Kettle bought,
And wha wad dare to spoil it;
By Heav'ns! the sacrilegious dog
Shall fuel be to boil it!

The wretch that would a tyrant own,
And the wretch, his true-born brother,
Who would set the Mob aboon the Throne,
May they be damn'd together!
Who will not sing "God save the King,"
Shall hang as high's the steeple;
But while we sing "God save the King,"
We'll ne'er forget The People!

    Bobbie Burns the Bard


  1. Commoners like us not having to deal with politics is definitely a perk of Monarchy! Thanks for sharing those poems.

  2. Ha, ha! True! Well, old style monarchy, at least! ;-)

    Glad you enjoyed the poems! I thought they make an interesting contrast and an apt summary of this year's events in Britain. Like our own American Civil War, it's going to take strength, resilience, and fair-mindedness to reunify and reconcile with British people while at the same time making the needed compromises and reforms.

    The spirit of Burns, with it's sheer multi-faceted cultural reach, could serve as a good example of this balance.

  3. When you do vote for the first time, make sure you have some form of ID to prove you are old enough to vote. The poll volunteers said I looked 14, and they didn't believe my age unti I showed them my driver's license.

  4. Bobbie Burns the Bard

    Really???? Bobbie????

  5. Hi, Thomas Toner,

    Yeah, I have heard him playfully called both "Bobbie" and "Robbie"! I think it's rather cute...;-) Besides, "Bobbie" goes well with "Bard"! And I think the "ie" spelling can be chalked up to being a Scottish thing, although I'll have to double-check that! lol