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178 WILLIAM THOM, THE WEAVER POET.
little brook and began to play. It rang sweetly amongst the trees. I moved on and on, still playing, and still facing the town. The Flowers of the Forest brought me before the house, lately mentioned. My music raised one window after another, and in less than ten minutes put me in possession of three shillings ninepence of good British money. I sent the mother home with this treasure, and directed her to send the little girl to me. It was by this time nearly dark. Every one says, ' Things just need a beginning.' I have had a beginning and a very good one, too. I had also a turn for strathspeys, and there appeared to be a run on them. By this time I was nearing the middle of the town. When I finally made my way, and retired to my lodging, it was with five shillings and some pence in addition to what was given us. My little girl got a beautiful shawl and some articles of wearing apparel."
He followed up his playing by writing an ode to his flute, which he got printed on slips, and sent in to the houses before which he appeared, with satisfactory results in donations, in one instance receiving the magnificent reward of half a guinea. But, as he says, it was but "beggar's wark," and he was glad to return to his weaving when times got a little better.
After a year at the loom in Aberdeen, he had an