Home  »  The Oxford Book of English Verse  »  493. Mary Morison

Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. 1919. The Oxford Book of English Verse: 1250–1900.

Robert Burns. 1759–1796

493. Mary Morison

O MARY, at thy window be, 
  It is the wish’d, the trysted hour! 
Those smiles and glances let me see, 
  That make the miser’s treasure poor: 
How blythely wad I bide the stour         5
  A weary slave frae sun to sun, 
Could I the rich reward secure, 
  The lovely Mary Morison! 
Yestreen, when to the trembling string 
  The dance gaed thro’ the lighted ha’,  10
To thee my fancy took its wing, 
  I sat, but neither heard nor saw: 
Tho’ this was fair, and that was braw, 
  And yon the toast of a’ the town, 
I sigh’d, and said amang them a’,  15
  ‘Ye arena Mary Morison.’ 
O Mary, canst thou wreck his peace, 
  Wha for thy sake wad gladly die? 
Or canst thou break that heart of his, 
  Whase only faut is loving thee?  20
If love for love thou wiltna gie, 
  At least be pity to me shown; 
A thought ungentle canna be 
  The thought o’ Mary Morison. 
GLOSS:  stour] dust, turmoil.