Address of Beelzebub

Address of Beelzebub

To the Right Honorable The Earl of Breadalbane, President of the Right Honorable and Honorable the 
Highland Society, which met on 23rd May last, at the Shakespeare, Covent Garden to concert ways and 
means to frustrate the designs of five hundred highlanders who, as the Society were informed by Mr. 
M'Kenzie of Applecross, were so audacious as to attempt an escape from their lawful lords and masters 
whose property they were, by emigrating from the lands of Mr. Macdonald of Glengary to the lands 
of Canada, in search of that fantastic thing — Liberty.

Long Life, My Lord, an’ health be yours,
Unskaith’d by hunger’d Highlan Boors!
Lord grant, nae duddie, desp’rate beggar,
Wi’ durk, claymore, or rusty trigger
May twin auld Scotland o’ a life,
She likes—as butchers like a knife!

Faith, you and Applecross were right
To keep the Highlan hounds in sight!
I doubt na! they wad bid nae better
Than let them ance out owre the water;
Then up amang thae lakes an’ seas
They’ll mak what rules an’ laws they please.

Some daring Hancocke, or a Frankline,
May set their Highlan bluid a ranklin;
Some Washington again may head them,
Or some Montgomery, fearless, lead them;
Till, God knows what may be effected,
When by such heads an’ hearts directed:
Poor, dunghill sons of dirt an’ mire,
May to patrician rights aspire;
Nae sage North, now, nor sager Sackville,
To watch an’ premier owre the pack vile!
An’ whare will ye get Howes an’ Clintons
To bring them to a right repentance,
To cowe the rebel generation,
An’ save the honor o’ the Nation?
They! an’ be damn’d! what right hae they
To Meat, or Sleep, or light o’ day,
Far less to riches, pow’r, or freedom,
But what your lordships please to gie them?

But hear me, my lord! Glengary hear!
Your hand’s owre light on them, I fear:
Your factors, greives, trustees an’ bailies,
I canna say but they do gailies;
They lay aside a’ tender mercies
An’ tirl the hallions to the birsies;
Yet, while they’re only poin’d, and herriet,
They’ll keep their stubborn Highlan spirit.
But smash them! crush them a’ to spails!
An’ rot the dyvors i’ the jails!
The young dogs, swinge them to the labour,
Let wark an’ hunger mak them sober!
The hizzies, if they’re oughtlins fausont,
Let them in Drury lane be lesson’d!
An’ if the wives, an’ dirty brats,
Come thiggan at your doors an’ yets,
Flaffan wi’ duds, an’ grey wi’ beese,
Frightan awa your deucks an’ geese;
Get out a horse-whip, or a jowler,
The langest thong, the fiercest growler,
An’ gar the tatter’d gipseys pack
Wi’ a’ their bastarts on their back!

Go on, my lord! I lang to meet you
An’ in my house at hame to greet you;
Wi’ common lords ye shanna mingle,
The benmost newk, beside the ingle
At my right hand, assign’d your seat
’Tween Herod’s hip, an’ Polycrate;
Or, if ye on your station tarrow,
Between Almagro and Pizarro;
A seat, I’m sure ye’re weel deservin ’t;
An’ till ye come—your humble servant,

BEELZEBUB. Hell 1st June Anno Mundi 5790
Robert Burns
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