Posted on | April 27, 2012 | by Vince Janoski | No Comments
I seem to be drawn to little strathspeys lately. And why not? The strathspey is a uniquely Scottish idiom and who better to underscore that than the most uniquely Scottish poet and bard Robert Burns. The line of the title “My Lady’s Gown There’s Gairs Upon It” is sometimes used as the title of a Burns poem and song from 1787 that also goes by the name “My Lord A-Hunting” or simply “My Lady’s Gown.” (See the full lyrics below.) “Gairs” or “gores” are triangular pieces of cloth that would have been used to create a pattern in a ladies dress. The song lyrics describe the dress and suggest, in typical Burns fashion, that there’s more than meets the eye. You can view and download the score below. Listen to the podcast for more background and a rendition of the tune of the bagpipe. Click here to subscribe to the podcast in iTunes.
“My Lady’s Gown”
by Robert Burns
My lady’s gown, there’s gairs upon’t,
And gowden flowers sae rare upon’t;
But Jenny’s jimps and jirkinet,
My lord thinks meikle mair upon’t!
My lord a-hunting he is gane,
But hounds or hawks wi’ him are nane;
By Colin’s cottage lies his game,
If Colin’s Jenny be at hame.
My lady’s white, my lady’s red,
And kith and kin o’ Cassillis’ blude;
But her ten-pund lands o’ tocher guid
Were a’ the charms his lordship lo’ed.
Out o’er yon muir, out o’er yon moss,
Whare gor-cocks thro’ the heather pass,
There wons auld Colin’s bonie lass,
A lily in the wilderness.
Sae sweetly move her genty limbs,
Like music notes o’ lovers’ hymns!
The diamond-dew in her een sae blue,
Where laughing love sae wanton swims!
My lady’s dink, my lady’s drest,
The flower and fancy o’ the west;
But the lassie that a man lo’es best,
O, that’s the lass to mak him blest!