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222 TONE-POETRY OF ROBERT BURNS
I once was a maid tho' I cannot tell when, And still my delight is in proper young men ; Some one of a troop of dragoons was my dadie ; No wonder I'm fond of a sodger laddie.
Chorus. Sing, Lai de lal, &c.
The first of my loves was a swaggering blade ; To rattle the thundering drum was his trade ; His leg was so tight and his cheek was so ruddy, Transported I was with my sodger laddie.
But the godly old chaplain left him in the lurch ; The sword I forsook for the sake of the church ; He ventur'd the soul, and I risked the body; 'Twas then I proved false to my sodger laddie.
Full soon I grew sick of my sanctified sot; The regiment at large for a husband I got; From the gilded spontoon to the fife I was ready ; I asked no more but a sodger laddie.
But the peace it reduc'd me to beg in despair, Till I met my old boy in a Cunningham fair; His rags regimental they flutter'd so gaudy ; My heart it rejoic'd at a sodger laddie.
And now I have lived—I know not how long!
And still I can join in a cup and a song;
But whilst with both hands I can hold the glass steady,
Here's to thee, my hero, my sodger laddie.
Poor Merry Andrew, in the neuk
Sat guzzling wi' a tinkler-hizzie; They mind't na wha the chorus teuk,
Between themsels they were sae busy : At length wi' drink an' courting dizzy,
He stoiter'd up An' made a face ; Then turn'd an' laid a smack on Grizzie,
Syne tun'd his pipes wi' grave grimace:—