1805 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Robert Burns

Anonymous, "Monody, on the Death of Robert Burns" Weekly Museum [New York] 17 (11 May 1805).



What, is there ill news, you're so sad, Robin Grey,
That your blue bonnet hangs o'er you brow?
Sad, O sad news I've read, Robin Burns, man, is dead,
And the ploughman weeps over his plough,
A-well, a-well a-day,
And the ploughman weeps over his plough.

Is his pipe mute for aye and for aye, Robin Grey,
No more shall we 'tend to his song?
Ah, cold a clod, under-neath the green sod,
Poor Robin they've laid all along.
A-well, a-well a-day,
Poor Robin they've laid all along.

Then farewell to the forest and hill, Robin Grey,
And farewell to the valley and grove—
The forest and hill and the vallies still ring,
A-well, a-well a-day,
Still they echo his ditties of love.

Then the blackbird shall sing on the thorn, Robin Grey,
And the lark early carrol on high,
The lowly lodg'd swain, as he scatters his grain,
Will chant Robin's verse with a sigh.
A-well, a-well a-day,
Will chant Robin's verse with a sigh.

Softly lie on his bosom, the turf Robin Grey,
Rest his ashes unmingled and pure,
May his tomb and his urn, Caledonia adorn,
And his much lov'd remains lie secure.
A-well a-well a-day,
And his much lov'd remains lie secure.